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Full text of "History of England from the accession of James I to the outbreak of the Civil War, 1603-1642"

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Prof. Myron I. Barker 

-, I, . ' .- - -' ** - 





1603-1616. 2 vols. 8vo. 1863. 


1617-1623. 2 vols. 8vo. 1869. 

HISTORY of ENGLAND under the DUKE of 
BUCKINGHAM and CHARLES I. 1624-1628. a vols. 8vo. 


from the DEATH of BUCKINGHAM to the DECLARA- 
1628-1637. 2 vols. 8vo. 1877. 


1637-1642. 2 vols. 8vo. 1881. 

The above Volumes were revised and re-issued in a cheaper form, 
under the title of ' A History of England, from the Accession of 
James I. to the Outbreak of the Civil War, 1603-1642.' 10 vols. 
Crown 8vo. 1883-4. 

HISTORY of the GREAT CIVIL WAR. 1642-1649. 
(3 vols.) 

VOL. I. 1642-1644. 8vo. 1886. 

VOL. II. 1644-1647. 8vo. 1889. 

VOL. III. 1647-1649. 8vo. 1891. 

These Volumes have been revised and re-issued in a cheaper 
form, in 4 vols. crown 8vo. uniform with the ' History of England, 
1603-1642.' 1893. 















All rights reserved 





1629 Prospects of the session . i 
1628 The King's appeal to the 

judges at the close of the 

last session . . 2 

Resistance to the payment 

of tonnage and poundage 3 
Committal of Chambers . 4 
Star Chamber proceedings 

against Chambers . . 5 
Rolie attempts to regain 

his goods by a replevin . 5 
Charles hopes to obtain 

a Parliamentary settle 

ment of the dispute 6 

Ecclesiastical questions ^ 

Promotion of Montagu 

and Manwaring . 
Cosin and Neile 
Cosin's Book of Devotions 
Burton and Prynne . 
Prynne's attack on Cosin 14 

Difficulty of enforcing the 
Elizabethan compromise 
about the position of the 
communion-table . 15 

Conflict at Grantham . . 16 

Decision of Bishop Wil- 
liams . . ,17 

Heath's letter to Montague 19 

Charles and Laud on dog- 
matic controversy . . 20 

The King's declaration on 
religion . . .21 

Abbot restored to favour . 23 

Wentworth's speech at 
York . . . 24 

Wentworth's political po- 
sition . .26 
1629 Fresh disturbances about 

tonnage and poundage . 28 

Parliamentary prospects . 29 



1629 Opening of the session . 30 
Alleged violation of the 
Petition of Right . 31 
Case of Rolle's privilege . 32 
The King's speech . . 33 

V OF 1629. 

The Bill for tonnage and 
poundage postponed . 
Rouse's speech on religion 
Committee on religion . 
Eliot's speech on religion . 





Position taken by the Com- 
mons . . .40 

Resolution of the Com- 
mons . 41 

Eliot proposes to take the 
aggressive . . 42 

Montague's bishopric ques- 
tioned . 44 

The Durham ceremonial- 
ists . . .44 

Smart's sermon . . 45 

Cosin on the Royal supre- 
macy . . .46 

The pardons for Montague 
and others questioned . 47 

Attack on the Article re- 
lating to the authority 
of the Church . . 48 

Charges against Heath and 
Neile . . -49 

Selden's position in the 
House . 50 

He speaks in favour of 
liberty of the press . 51 

Oliver Cromwell's early li f e 51 

His first speech in Parlia- 
ment . . -55 

Charges against the cere- 
monialists . 56 

The Jesuits' college at 
Clerkenwell . . 57 

Tonnage and poundage 
again discussed . . 58 

Eliot advises an attack on 
the farmers of the cus- 
toms . . -59 

Suggestions of Noy and 
Selden . 60 

The Court of Exchequer 
rejects the dictation of 
the Commons . .61 

Eliot refuses to accept 
Pyra's warning . . 62 

The House follows Eliot . 63 

Intervention of the King . 64 

The resolutions on religion 6.5 

Attempts to avert a rup- 
ture . . .66 

Eliot resolves to appeal to 
the country . 67 

The Speaker held down in 
his chair . . 63 

The Speaker refuses to 
allow Eliot's resolut : ons 
to be read . 69 

Renewed appeal to the 
Speaker to put the ques- 
tion . . .70 

Eliot proposes to impeach 
Weston . 71 

Continued excitement in 
the House . . 72 

Holies reads the resolutions 75 

The House adjourns after 
passing the resolutions . 76 



1629 Dissolution of Parliament 
and imprisonment of 
members . 77 

The King's Declaration . 78 
Examination of the prison- 
ers . . 79 
Antagonism between 

Charles and Eliot . . 81 
Tonnage and poundage 

exacted . . .82 

Stoppage of trade . . 82 
Chambers in the Star 

Chamber . .84. 

Opinion of the judges on 
the case of the impri- 
soned members . . 87 
Dissatisfaction of Charles. 89 
The prisoners apply for a 
Habeas Corpus . . 90 

The Attorney-General's in- 

formation in the Star 

Chamber . . . 

The prisoners demand bail 
The judges consult the 

King . , . 

Charles does not produce 

the prisoners . . 

Ch irles's treatment of the 

judges . . . 

Foreign policy of Charles . 
The Edict of Restitution 

in Germany . . . 

French intervention in 

Italy . . 

The Tren ty of Susa between 

England and France . 
The IVace of Liibeck and 

Rohan's rebellion . , 








Rubens in England . 102 

Roe's mission to the Baltic 103 

Charles listens to overtures 
from Spain . . . 104 

Weston and his antago- 
nists . . . 105 

Relations between Charles 
and the Queen . . 106 

Progress of the negotiation 
with Spain . . 107 

The Star Chamber prose- 
cution dropped . . 108 

Question of bailing the 
prisoners before the 
judges . . . 109 

The prisoners refuse to 
be bound to good be- 
haviour . . no 


Conduct of Chief Baron 
Walter . . .112 

Suspension of the Chief 
Baron . 113 

Chamber's case in the Ex- 
chequer . . .114 

Eliot in the Marshalsea . 115 
1630 The Attorney-General's in- 
formation in the King's 
Bench . 115 

The prisoners deny the 
jurisdiction of the court n6 

The judges claim jurisdic- 
tion . . . 117 

Judgment pronounced . 119 

Eliot's impri-onment . . 120 

Eliot in advance of his 
time , 121 



1629 The judges and the Peti- 

tion of Right . . 123 

Laud's views on toleration 124 
His estimate of the value 
of external influences on 
conduct . . .125 

His support of the Royal 

authority . . . 127 

He becomes the centre of 
the opposition to Puri- 
tanism . . . 128 
Sentence on Peter Smart . 129 
Suppression of unlicensed 
books and enforcement 
of conformity . .130 
The lecturers . .130 
The King's instructions . 131 
Prohibition of controversy 132 

1630 Laud Chancellor of the 

University of Oxford . 133 

1629 Wentworth at York . . 134 
Character of his Royalism 135 
He regards himself as the 

maintainer of the old 
constitution . . 137 

Sir R. Dudley's paper of 
advice gets into circula- 
tion . . . 138 

1630 Prosecution of those who 

circulated it put an end 
to in consequence of the 
birth of a prince . 140 

Death of Sir R. Cotton . 141 

The Puritans regret the 
birth of a prince . . 141 

Alexander Leighton . 143 

Sion's Pica against Pre- 
lacy . . .144 

Arrest of Leighton . . 145 

Political Presbyterianism . 146 

Leighton sentenced in the 
Star Chamber . . 147 

Execution of the sentence 150 

Laud's alliance with Went- 
worth . . . 152 

John Winthrop's early 
life . . .153 

He resolves to emigrate to 
New England . . 154 

Early settlement in Massa- 
chusetts . . . 155 

Transference of the Mas- 
sachusetts charter to 
America . . . 156 

Winthrop sails for America 156 

Ecclesiastical and political 
system of Massachusetts 157 

Toleration rejected in Eng- 
land and America . . 158 

Cosin's sermon on the 
peace of Jerusalem . 159 

Wentworth in the Privy 
Council . . . 160 

Attempt of the Council to 
restrict the ravages of 
the plague . . . 160 

Proclamation against new 

buildings . 
Measures taken to avert 

famine . 
Commission for the relief 

of debtors . 
Commission for the relief 

of the poor 
Cromwell's objections to 





the new charter of Hun- 

. . 





Weston's financial difficul- 


ties . . . 



Compositions for knight- 





Enforcement of tonnage 



and poundage . . 


3 tO 



1630 Domestic and foreign 

policy of Charles . . 169 

Vane's mission to the 
Hague . . . 170 

Coloma's reception in Eng- 
land. . . . 170 

Opening of Cottington's 
negotiation at Madrid . 171 

Proposed league with Spain 
against the Dutch . . 172 

Anstruther's mission to the 
Emperor . . 173 

Dismissal of Wallenstein 
and landing of Gustavus 174 

The Treaty of Madrid be- 
tween Englai.d and Spain 175 

1631 Secret treaty with Spain 

for the partition of the 

Dutch territories . . 176 
Money convoyed to the 

Spanish Netherlands . 177 
Hamilton levies volunteers 

for Gustavus . . 178 

The Treaty of Barwalde 

and the storming of 

Magdeburg . . . 179 

Fatality of the career of 

Olivares. . .180 

Anstruther at Vienna . . 181 
Lord Reay's charge against 

Hamilton . .182 

Hamilton is allowed to sail 183 
Richelieu's overtures to 

Weston . . . 184 

Escape of Mary de Medicis 

to the Netherlands . 184 
Quarrel between Henrietta 

Maria and the French 

ambassador . .186 

Failure of Anstruther's 

mission . . . 187 

Vane's mission to Gustavus 1 88 

The battle of Breitenfeld . 188 
Vane's interview with Gus- 

vus . . . 189 

Charles offers aid to the 

Emperor . . . 190 

Hamilton's misfortunes . 191 
Eliot in prison . .191 

Eliot's last word on politics 192 
Charles receives the de- 
mands of Gustavus . 193 
1632 Further negotiation with 

Gustavus . . 194 

Gustavus and Richelieu . 195 
Charles meets Gustavus 

with counter-propositions 196 
Fresh Swedish victories . 197 
Charles negotiates with 

France . . . 197 

Advance of the French . 198 
Roe's political advice . 199 
Windebank Secretary of 

State . . . 200 

Massinger's political plays 201 
Jerome We.--ton's mission . 204 
Gustavus rejects Charles's 

propositions . . 205 

Failure of Charles's diplo- 
macy . . . 205 
Gustavus at Nuremberg . 206 
Death of Gustavus at Liit- 
zen, and of Frederick at 
Bacharach . . . 207 
Boast of material pros- 
perity in England . . 208 
Discontent in the Spanish 

Netherlands . . 209 

The nobles ask for 

Charles's support . .210 
Meeting of the States- 
Gene] al at Brussels . 211 
Charles offers to protect 
them . , 212 


Defeat of Montmorency . 
Richelieu seeks a Dutch 

Charles hesitates between 

France and Spain 
1633 Richelieu's offers to the 

Anstruther sent to offer 

assistance to the Swedes 





Weston created Earl of 
Portland . . 216 

The Queen's letter inter- 
cepted . . . 217 

Quarrel between the 
Queen's Court and the 
Westons . .218 

Understanding between 
Richelieu and Portland . 219 



1631 The lawyers rally round 

the Government . 220 

Views of the antiquaries . 222 
Eliot's Monarchy of Man . 224 

1632 His last days and death . 225 
Charles refuses leave to 

transport Eliot's body 

to Port Eliot . . 227 

1631 Wentworth in the North . 228 
He is insulted by Bellasys 229 
Bellasys makes his sub- 
mission . . . 230 

Case of Sir David Foulis . 231 
Lord Eure's resistance 

overcome . . . 232 

Wentworth vindicates his 

authority . . 233 

His struggle against the 

influences of wealth and 

position . . . 237 

Sentence on Foulis . 237 

Conflict of jurisdictions . 238 

1633 Wentworth leaves the 

North . . . 239 

1632 The Government and the 

country gentlemen . . 240 
1631 Laud's activity as Bishop 

of London . . 241 

Powing in church . . 242 
The consecration of St. 

Catherine Cree . . 243 

Laud's buildings at St. 

John's . . . 245 

The repnir of St. Paul's . 245 
Controversy between 

Prynne and Widdowes . 247 
Party feeling at Oxford . 248 
Laud and the Puritan 

clergy . . .249 

Bernard's sermon at Cam- 
bridge . . . 250 

1632 Matrimonial cases in the 

High Commission . 251 
Antinomians and Separa- ' 

lists . . . 252 

Case of John Vicars . . 253 

1629 Sherfield at Salisbury . . 254 

1630 The Bishop objects to the 

removal of a painted 
window . . . 255 

Sherfield breaks the win- 
dow . . . 256 

1633 Sherfield's trial and sen- 

tence in the Star Cham- 
ber . . . 256 
The feoffees for impro- 

priations dissolved . . 258 
William Gouge . . 259 

Richard Sibbes . . 260 

Nicholas Ferrar . . 262 

George Herbert . . 265 

John Milton . . 270 

Milton not yet hostile to 

the Church . . . 271 

The disruption of the na- 
tion yet incomplete . 272 



1620 Enforcement of the Arti- 

cles of Perth . . 274 

1621 The Articles confirmed by 

Parliament . 275 

1625 Church property in the 

hands of the nobles 276 

Charles's Act of Revoca- 
tion . . . 277 


1626 Charles offers compensa- 
tion and partially sus- 
pends the Articles . 278 

1629 A compromise effected . 279 
Impending conflict be- 
tween the Crown and 
the nobility . . 280 

1633 The King's coronation at 

Edinburgh . . . 281 

1629 Question of introducing a 
new Praj er-book dis- 
cussed . . . 282 
Position of the Scottish 
bishops . . . 284 

1633 Ceremonies observed at 

i he coronation . . 285 

Meeting of the Scottish 

Parliament . . . 286 

Difficulties thrown in the 
way of opposition by 
the constiiution of the 
Parliament . . 287 

Ceremonialism in Edin- 
burgh , . . 288 
The Bills proposed by the 

Government accepted . 289 
The introduction of the 
new Prayer-book post- 
poned . . . 290 
Constitution of the bishop- 
ric of Edinburgh . . 291 
The old and new bishops . 292 
Charles and the Opposi- 
tion lords . . 293 
The Supplication . . 293 
Constitutional reforms de- 
manded . . . 94 
1635 Balmerino tried and sen- 
tenced . . . 295 
Appeal of Drummond of 

Hawthornden . . 296 

Bahnerino pardoned . . 296 
Hamilton in favour 297 

Spottiswoode chancellor 298 



1633 Laud named Archbishop . 299 
Abbot's last report . . 300 
A Cardinal's hat offered 

to Laud . . 301 

Cases of Ludowick Bow- 
yer and Lady Eleanor 
Davit's . . . 302 

Restriction on ordinations 303 
Lecturers and chaplains . 304 
Laud's opposition to the 
influence of the laity in 
the Church . . . 305 

His view of the Royal 

authority in the Church 306 
State of St. Paul's . 307 

The chapel at Lambeth . . 308 
Williams's directions about 
the communion-table at 
Leicester . . . 309 

The communion-table at 

St. Gregory's . . 310 

Complaint of the parish- 
ioners . . . 310 
The King's decision . 311 
The English churches on 

the Continent . . 314 

Chaplains in the English 
regiments in the Nether- 
lands . . . 316 

Increase of emigration to 

Massachusetts . . 317 
1634 Order forbidding emigra- 
tion issued and rescinded 317 

1633 The Puritan Sabbath and 

the Somersetshire Wakes 318 
Laud's interference with 
Richardson's order pro- 
hibiting them . . 320 
Report of Bishop Pierce . 320 
Republication of the 

Declaration of Sports . 321 
Order that the Declaration 
of Sports be read in 
churches . . 322 

1634 Belief in witchcraft . . 322 
The Lancashire witches . 323 
Stories of Margaret John- 
son, of Frances Diccon- 
son, and of Mary 
Spencer. . . 324 

The Lancashire witches on 

the stage . . . 326 

Immorality of the stage . 327 
Prynne's Histriomastix . 327 
The Inns of Court ma-que 330 
Shirley's Gamester . . 331 
Star Chamber proceedings 
against Prynne . . 332 


Pryrme's sentence . . 

Mis s?cond appearance 
in the Star Cham- 
ber . . , 

Milton's Comus 



Women of Milton and 

Massinger . . 337 

Society of the Court . . 338 

Case of Henry Jermyn . 339 

Protestantism of the 

women of England . 340 



1633 The League of Heilbronn. 342 
A Benevolence proposed 

by Nethersole . . 343 

The negotiation in the 

Netherlands . . 344 

Proposed revolution in the 

Spanish Netherlands . 344 
Charles offers to support it 345 
He is betrayed by Gerbier 346 
The French in Alsace . 347 
Importance of Dunkirk to 

England . . . 348 

Overtures of Spain . 349 

1634 Disgrace of Nethersole . 350 
Charles's offers to Spain . 351 
Assassination of Wallen- 

stein . . -353 

Union between the two 
branches of the House 
of Austria . . . 353 

Reception at Madrid of 
Charles's overtures . 354 

Attack made by Laud and 
Coventry on Portland . 355 

Ship-money from the port- 
towns suggested by Noy 356 

Charles's proposed alliance 
with Spain concealed 
from the Council . 357 

Ke sets forth his need of 
a fleet to maintain his 
sovereignty of the seas . 358 

Deaths of Noy and Sir 
Edward Coke . . 359 

Seizure of Coke's napers . 360 

Dismissal of Chief Justice 
Heath . . .361 

Holland's 'justice seat' in 
the Forest of Dean . 362 

The 'justice seat' in Wal- 
tham Forest . . 365 

Legal character of 
Charles'? absolutism . 365 

Continued negotiation with 
Necolalde . . . 366 

The secret treaty with 
Spain . . . 367 

Pretexts for its conceal- 
ment . . . 368 

Issue of the ship-money 
writs . . . 369 

The battle of Nordlingen . 372 

Charles's advice to his 
sist u r . . . 373 

The French in Germany . 374 

The London petition 
against ship-money . 375 

Submiss'on of the City . 376 

Portland's finance . . 377 

1635 His illness and death . . 378 

The Treasury Commission 379 

Charles urges Spain to 
conclude the treaty . 380 

Treaty between France and 
the States-General . . 380 

The Spanish Government 
agrees to the proposed 
treaty . . . 383 

In consequence of the out- 
break of w-ir between 
France and Spain, the 
treaty is left unsigned . 384 

The Earl of Lindsey sails 
in command of the fleet 384 

He finds no enemy . 385 

Failure of the French 
attack on the Spanish 
Netherlands . . 387 

The Peace of Prague . 388 

Lindsey returns to the 
Downs . . . 389 

Dutch breaches of neutra- 
lity . . . 389 

Difficulties of Charles's 
situation . . . 390 




ALTHOUGH as the time drew near for the opening of another 

session, it seemed likely that the cloud which had long hung 

1629. over tne foreign relations of England would clear 

January. away th e Government was not without grave sub- 

Prospectsof ] ' 

the session, jects of disquietude. Its first difficulty arose from 
the question of tonnage and poundage which had been stirred 
at the end of the last session. The Commons had not only 
declared the levy of these dues to be illegal, but had encouraged 
individual merchants to refuse payment to the King's officers. 1 
As the trade of the country had suffered severely from the ravages 
of the Dunkirk privateers, the suggestion that the merchants 
might free themselves from such a burden fell upon willing 
ears. The spirit of the old English constitution was on their 
side, aiid they were assured by no less a body than the House 
of Commons, that they had the letter of the law .on their side as 
well. The King was sure to take a different view of the case. 
He held it to be the duty of his subjects to give him a revenue 
sufficient to enable him to conduct the regular administration 
of government without interruption ; and it was certain that, 
unless tonnage and poundage and the still more questionable 
impositions continued to be paid, little short of half of his 
income would be lost at a stroke. 

1 See Vol. VI., page 323. 


At the close of the last session the King had taken strong 

ground in asserting that the interpretation of the law belonged 

1628. to tf* 6 J^ges, not to ^ e House of Commons. Such 

July. then, as now, was the accepted rule of the consti- 

appeaiufthe tution. Yet it was impossible to allow any mere 

judges. interpretation of the law to decide the question at 

issue. 1 As well might two men engaged in deadly strife ask an 

impartial arbiter to decide the question of property in the dagger 

to which both were clinging with convulsive grasp. Nothing 

less than the supreme authority in England was at stake. 

If the King could collect money without opposition, he 
might govern as he pleased till he provoked a revolution. If 
Question at ne could not collect it without the consent of the 
issue. Commons they might dictate their own terms. The 

impositions had been adjudged to James simply because certain 
words had been used instead of others in Acts of Parliament 
three centuries old. If tonnage and poundage were now to 
be declared leviable as impositions had been levied, at the sole 
will of the King, it would be because certain technical words 
had been omitted in the Petition of Right. Such considera- 
tions would never be suffered to weigh very heavily in the 
balance. However accurate men might try to be in their 
reading of the law, they could not avoid being influenced by 
the enormous consequences of the interpretation which they 

A possible instance may be taken to illustrate the position. The pre- 
sent constitution rests upon the maintenance of tolerable harmony between 
the two Houses. Suppose it should happen that the House of Lords 
placed itself in deliberate opposition to the House of Commons, even after 
a general election had shown that the House of Commons was in accord- 
fjice with the feelings of the constituencies. Suppose that the House of 
Lords rejected every Bill sent up to it by the Commons. What would be 
the use of applying to the judges as arbitrators ? They could but decide 
that the Lords were legally in the right. They could not decide whether 
they were politically in the right. That would depend partly upon the 
chance of the Peers converting the nation to their views, partly upon 
the extent to which the existing constituencies were a fair representation of 
the nation. It would be quite possible for a national feeling to spring up 
which had no representation in the House of Commons, though that is far 
less like'y to happen now than it was with the unreformed House, 


gave to it They could not scan statutes and year-books with 
the serene impartiality with which a botanist scans the claims 
of a newly-discovered plant to be classed in one natural order 
or another. Those who thought that it was better that 
authority should remain in the King's hands than pass into 
those of the House of Commons, would naturally be of one 
opinion. Those who thought that it was better that England 
should be ruled in accordance with the wishes of the House 
of Commons than that her destinies should be left to the good 
pleasure of the King, would naturally be of another opinion. 
Whatever the views of the judges might be, a grave political 
question would never be settled by other than political argu- 
ments or political forces. 

The immediate danger arose from the appeal of the House 
of Commons to the private action of individuals. The first 
Resistance result of that appeal was that some merchants re- 
men^oftm- ^ use< ^ to P av tne imposition on wines. Those who 
positions. resisted were committed to the Fleet, but were 
speedily liberated on entering into bonds to pay the required 
sum. The imposition on currants, the very article which had 
been the subject of the judges' decision in James's reign, was 
next challenged. Importers began to land goods without 
paying duty. Charles took a firm stand against this attempt 
July 20. f individual merchants to take the law into their 
The Council own hands. In full council he declared that these 

orders poods ... . 

to be seized, impositions were his 'by a solemn and legal judg- 
ment.' Finding the warning ineffectual, the Council issued 
orders to seize all goods landed without payment. 1 

The example of the recalcitrant merchants spread. Goods 
liable to tonnage and poundage were seized for non-payment 
of dues. The owners had recourse to the Sheriff's 
pundfge an Court of the City of London, and sued out a replevin, 
resiste . as ^ ^ re g am p ro p e rty of their own which had been 
illegally distrained. Popular feeling was on the side of the 
merchants ; and it was feared that an attempt would be made 
to carry off the goods by force. The Council directed that 

1 Rush-worth, \. 639 ; Council Register, July 20, Aug. 13. 
B 2 


assistance should be given to the Custom-house officers in 
Aug. 31. tne execution of their duty, and that those who resisted 
panders re- them should be imprisoned ' until this Board give 
Anprisoned. other order, or that they be delivered by order of 
law.' l Evidently the Government wished to conform to the 
Petition of Right, and to make the judges the arbitrators of 
the dispute. 

Resistance did not cease. To the merchants it was a 
question of refusing to submit to an unblushing attempt to 
extract illegal duties by force ; and this question was 
Committal of mixed up in the minds of some of them with the 
>ers " injury done to trade by compelling them to pay 
duties at all. On September 28, the refusers were summoned 
before the Council. One of them, Richard Chambers, flung 
out defiant words. " Merchants," he said, "are in no part of 
the world so screwed and wrung as in England. In Turkey 
they have more encouragement." 2 The words themselves, 
perhaps still more the tone in which they were spoken, gave 
offence, and Chambers was committed to the Marshalsea for 
contempt of the Board. 

In the midst of such agitation it would hardly be wise to 
allow Parliament to meet in October, as had been originally 

proposed. Two days after the committal of Cham- 
Prorogation : . , , . 
ofPariia- bers, it was resolved to prorogue it to January 20. 

It was fervently hoped by the Councillors that time 
would thus be gained for establishing a better understanding 
with the Commons ; ' the medicine of a constant and settled 
form of government ' being ' the only remedy for the distemper ' 
of the times. 3 

Chambers was not the man to give any assistance to the 
ig establishment of a constant and settled government. 
Chambers He applied to the Court of King's Bench for a 
fa"? s ' writ of habeas corpus. For the first time the judges 
*/**t were called upon to exercise the authority secured 
to them by the Petition of Right. The warrant of committal 

1 Council Register, Aug. 31. 

* Form of Submission, Kushworth, i. 672. 

Dorchester to Carlisle, Sept. 30, Court and Times, i. 403. 


was produced in court, stating that the cause of imprison- 
ment was 'insolent behaviour and words spoken at the 
Council Table.' The judges did not dispute that the Council, 
like any other superior court, might commit for contempt ; 
but they held that the words spoken ought to be set down for 
their information, in order that they might convince themselves 
that they really amounted to a contempt. As no account of 
Oc t> 23- the words had been given, they admitted Chambers 
andisbaiied. to bail, though they advised him to make his submis- 
sion to the Board, and warned him that they might, if they' 
pleased, order an indictment or information to be drawn against 
him in their own court for his contemptuous words. The 
Lord Keeper and other members of the Council complained 
that the judges had failed to give them due notice of what they 
intended to do ; but they did not deny the principle on which 
the court had acted, namely, that the judges had the right of 
examining whether the cause named on the warrant was truly 
given. 1 

The Crown lawyers took another course than that suggested 

by the judges. The Petition of Right had not in any way 

lessened the powers of the Star Chamber, and the 

Nov. 6. ' 

Star (.ham- Attorney-Central preferred an information against 
lltgs P a^nst Chambers in that court. It is likely enough that 
h ""' the Government was by no means sorry that some 

months would pass away before the case came on for trial. 2 

Whatever fate might be reserved for Chambers, it was ne- 
cessary to take an instant decision on the collection of the 
duties. Some thirty of the principal merchants, 
resistance to amongst them John Rolle, a member of the House 
the dunes. Q ^ Commons, refused to pay, though they offered to 
give security for any sum which might ultimately be adjudged 
to the King by law. On November 1 2, Rolle and 
,ov. 12. t h ree others made a fresh attempt to regain their 
goods by a replevin. The Attorney- General applied to the 

1 Ruslnvorth, i. 639. 

8 Meade to Stuteville, Nov. 15, Court and Times, i. 429. Meade says 
that he was ' committed a second time to one of the tipstaves of that Court.' 
Does that mean that he was actually imprisoned till the case came on ? 


Court of Exchequer, and the Barons at once ordered that the 
NOV i goods should remain in the officers' hands. The 
interference question at issue, they held, was too important to be 
of EX- l determined in an offhand fashion by a City court 
chequer. j t wag t on |y fa f Qr foe Parliament now shortly to be 

reassembled, there to be finally settled, as the desire of his 
Majesty and the discreeter sort of merchants is it should be.' 
NOV. 27. A fortnight later the Court of Exchequer finally 
siorfof the decided that a replevin was not the proper method 
gourt. o f taking ' goods out of his Majesty's own possession,' 
and that in this case the property must be held to be in the 
King's possession. 1 

The question between the Crown and the merchants was 

thus, for a time, narrowed to a difference of opinion as to which 

party was so far entitled to be considered prima facie 

The question . , .,. un j ^ ^ ^i L J e 

referred to in the right, as to be allowed to retain the custody of 
Parliament. the gOQC } s w hii s t the legality of the demand for duty 
was submitted to a superior court. Weston, who, as Lord Trea- 
surer, had a seat on the Bench of the Exchequer, announced, as 
the Barons had done before, that he looked to another quarter 
for a final solution of the difficulty. The court, he said, would 
now ' by no means meddle with the question of right, but did 
refer it wholly to the Parliament, where he made no doubt there 
would be perfect agreement between the King and subject.' 2 

Thus far, under Weston's guidance, Charles had proceeded 
with no inconsiderable tact. He had retreated from the de- 
The King's nant position which he had taken up at the clo.e of 
position. t h e i ast sess i onj an( j without openly abandoning his 
claim to levy the whole of the customs' duties of the realm 
under the name of Impositions, had refrained from irritating 

1 Orders and Decrees in the Exchequer, Nov. 13, 27, 4 Charles I., 
fol. 254, 262 ; Alt. -Gen. v. Rolle. In S. P. Dom. civ. i, is an undated 
collection of orders, ' apparently granted by the Court of Exchequer to stay 
proceedings in suits at the Common-law brought against the King's officers 
for levying his duties.' It must have been made either now, or during the 
subsequent session of Parliament, and must have formed a valuable support 
to the decision of the Court. 

1 Pory to Mead* 1 , Nov. 28, Court and Times, i. 437. 


his subjects by bringing it prominently forward. He would not 
s-.iffer the rights which he believed to be his own to be trampled 
under foot by mob violence ; but he was ready to submit them 
to the decision of the judges. At the same time he acknow- 
ledged that the question went too deep to be settled by legal 
arguments. It was pre-eminently a political question, and he 
hoped to be able to come to an amicable arrangement on it 
with his Parliament. 

It was not unlikely that Parliament, and especially the 
House of Commons, would regard the question from a very 
Possibility of different point of view. They might resent the levy 
thlfthe"" f t^ 6 duties as an infraction of the law, according to 
Commons, ^g interpretation which they had persistently put 
upon it since 1610. They might even pronounce it, as they had 
pronounced it in the last session, to be contrary to the Petition 
of Right. Further, if there was any object upon which they 
had set their hearts, and which the King declined to grant, they 
might use their power of refusing to pass a Bill of Tonnage and 
Poundage in order to extort that object from their unwilling 

It was only too probable that contention would arise on 
some question of ecclesiastical politics. At the close of the 
November, last session the Remonstrance of the Commons had 
of tha* 11 **" spoken bitterly of Laud and Neile, and had demand- 
Church. e d the suppression of Arminianism in the Church. 
The Church of England, in fact, was called upon to face the 
difficulty which meets every society which renounces old 
authority and relaxes the bonds of ancient discipline. The 
victory over external enemies was won, but there was danger of 
divisions and distractions within. Those who questioned the 
received Calvinistic doctrines were regarded as renegades from 
the faith, as traitors ready to replace a Prctestant Church 
under the Papal yoke. Yet though the repulsion to Arminian- 
ism, or to what passed as Arminianism, was real and strong, 
a political element was mingled with the religious element in 
the popular feeling. Montague had closed his obnoxious book 
with alarming words : " Do thou defend me with the sword, 
and I will defend thee with the pen." It was probably un- 


avoidable that a body of clergy whose views were proscribed by 
popular religious opinion should lean upon the Royal authority 
which they regarded as raised above popular opinion. Eliza- 
beth had kept the Puritans at bay, and why should not Charles 
follow in her steps ? Was not the Church the King's peculiar 
province, to be ruled without reference to Parliament ? 
Montague had been followed by others who carried the attack 
into the enemies' quarters. Sibthorpe and Manwaring had pub- 
licly maintained doctrines concerning the State which stripped 
Parliament even of those powers which had hitherto been 
universally allowed to belong to it. It seemed as if a league 
had been struck by which the King was to maintain the anti- 
Calvinist clergy in their places, whilst they in return were to 
inculcate the duty of obeying the absolute authority of the 

Charles had done everything that lay in his power to give 

strength to this impression ; for he had raised Montague to the 

bishopric of Chichester, and had granted a rich living 

Promotions to Manwaring. How could men doubt that he was 

of Montague , .... ... 

and Man- bent not merely on providing tor liberty of opinion, 
which would have been unpopular enough but 
on closing the mouths of Calvinistic preachers, and on breeding 
up a race of clergy ready to inculcate doctrines of a different 
cast ? 

Abstruse as the prevailing doctrine of grace and predestina- 
tion was, it struck its roots deeply into the moral nature of 
Moral side those who valued it as a pearl of great price. It made 
togfcli'dis'-" them braver and more self-reliant It imparted to 
pute. them a contempt for merely human authority, by 

impressing on them the duty of an absolute surrender of the 
will to a Perfect and Divine Being. Yet strong as the senti- 
ments were which gathered round it, a nation would hardly 
have been roused in the defence of a merely theological dogma, 
if the question at issue had not been presented in some more 
palpable form. The human mind requires considerable culti- 
vation before it is seriously impressed by that which appeals to 
it through the ear : it is easily moved by sights which reach the 
eye. Already there were signs, though few as yet, that the 


quarrel would soon take a new form. The men who looked 
back for their doctrine to the early Reformers and to the earlier 
Fathers were likely to look in the same direction for their 
Ceremonial ceremonies. In proportion as they broke loose from 
dispute. t i ie logical bonds of Calvinism, necessity led them to 
seek to order their lives by the requirements of a ceremonial 
devotion which might constantly remind them that they were 
the servants of a Heavenly Master. 

Amongst those who were repelled by the baldness of the 
ordinary Church worship of the day was John Cosin. Early in 
life he had attracted the notice of men as distin- 
john Cosin. guished as Overall and Andrewes. After Overall's 
death he attached himself to Bishop Neile of Durham, and 
joined the circle which comprised Laud and Montague, and 
which met constantly at Durham House, once the splendid 
habitation of Raleigh, to discuss the prospects of the Church 
Bishop an d the possibility of resisting the tide of Puritanism. 
Neile. Neile was as strict a disciplinarian as Laud himself. 

He is described as a good preacher, but a poor scholar ; and he 
left no mark upon the theological literature of the time. He had 
the good sense to make no attempt to conceal his deficiencies. 
One cay he reproved a Durham schoolmaster for flogging his 
pupils unmercifully. He himself, he said, was an example of 
the uselessness of so ferocious a discipline. He had been flogged 
so constantly at Westminster that he had never mastered the 
difficulties of the Latin language. 1 Yet he had that indefinable 
quality which enables some men in no way distinguished by 
their intellectual achievements to gather disciples round them, 
and to utilise the efforts of men whose powers are more pro- 
ductive than their own. He was a man of sumptuous habits, 
and displayed a marked preference for architectural and cere- 
monial splendour. 

Cosin had mingled early in controversial strife. 

Cosin assists In 1625 the sheets of the Appello Cczsarem were 
Montague. p] ace( j m m ' s hands as they came from the press, 
and he was invited by the confiding author to alter or to omit 

1 The story is told by Leighton (Epitome, 75) as being to the Bishop's 


passages at his pleasure. 1 In 1626 he took part in the conference 
at York House between Montague and his opponents. The next 
year he was brought more prominently before the eyes of the 
world. The King was alarmed at the discovery that 
The'ouem's hi s w ^ e an( ^ ^ er priests were practising upon the 
nee e d a ants religion of the English ladies of the Royal household. 

manual of Religious books were thrown in their way, and con- 

versation was led to the contrast between the English 

forms of worship and the imposing ceremonial of the Catholic 
Church. Either Lady Denbigh or Charles himself asked Cosin 
to provide a manual of private prayer which might fitly be used 
by members of the English Church. 2 

The result was a Book of Devotions, which was ready for 

l627- publication early in 1627. It was founded upon 

February, the Primer which had been issued in 1560, as that 

Kooklf had been founded upon an earlier Primer issued 

Dewtions. j n j^^ Much was, however, added which had 

no authority from the book published by the direction of 

Elizabeth. 3 

The devotion of Cosin was as precise and methodical as 
the logic of a Puritan's creed. In it, as in the Catholic 
manuals on which it was founded, every external form was to 
be taken advantage of to quicken the aspirations of the soul. 
Classification and arrangement have here a supreme import- 
ance. Certain days are to be kept for special abstinence or for 
special rejoicing. The Apostles' Creed is to be divided into 
twelve articles, the Lord's Prayer into seven petitions, each of 
which is to be separately regarded. Every one of the Command- 
ments has its appended list of duties to be performed and of 
offences to be avoided. Prayers are to be said at certain speci- 
fied hours. The distinction between good and evil threatened 
to become involved in considerations of time and number. There 
were three theological virtues, three kinds of good works, seven 
spiritual and six corporal works of mercy, seven deadly sins, 
and seven virtues opposed to them, whilst Death, Judgment, 

1 This we learn from Montague's letters in Cosin's Correspondence, 
Surtees Society. 

* Cosin's Works, i. xxi, * Ibid. ii. 8^. 


Hell and Heaven are duly catalogued as the four last things 
which may befall a man. 1 

The gulf between this religion and the religion of the or- 
dinary English Protestant was wide and deep. As the central 
Contrast point of the Puritan system lay in preaching and 
ol?na"d conversion, the central point of the system of their 
the Puritans, opponents lay in the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper. 
In preparing for it Cosin laid stress upon the words in the 
Prayer-book in which those who require counsel and comfort 
are admonished to seek out some discreet minister of God's 
Word, in order that they may receive absolution from him, 
though he never thought of proposing that such applications 
should be general or compulsory. For the Communion Service 
itself he provided a form of words to be repeated by the wor- 
shipper ' prostrate before the altar,' whilst he spoke of a real ./ 
though spiritual presence of Christ in the Sacrament itself, 
and reminded Christians that they were here enabled to offer 
a ' sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving ' as a memorial of the 
sacrifice of the Cross. 

Such a doctrine would offer a refuge to many who but for 

it would have fled from the uncongenial teaching of Puritanism 

into the arms of the Church of Rome. It would gather 

}lis views j-i, i -i ,- 1-1 

not to be round it all the growing love of aesthecic decoration, 
of colour, and of music. Beyond that, it appealed to 
one whole side of human nature, its weakness, its dependence 
upon outward surroundings, its need of a curb upon irreverence 
and thoughtlessness. On the other hand, to men of a strong 
and high-souled temperament it was nothing but Popery in dis- 
guise, bringing the spirit under outward and material bondage. 
If Puritanism had a noble and vigorous protest to urge 
against the attempt to confine religion within the bonds of 
Opposition ceremonial forms, it had also its own narrowness, and 
to cosm. j ts prostration before a logical system of theology. 
The first assault upon Cosin came from men who had no broad 
intelligence or spiritual insight, no quality to inspire respect, 
except that dogged persistency in support of that which they 

1 Except the special hours of prayer, there is nothing of all this in 
Elizabeth's book. 


believed to be true, which is in itself a virtue. One of these 
Henry men, Henry Burton, had been attached to the seivice 
Burton. Q f Henry Prince of Wales, and had afterwards been 
taken into his brother's household. Before Charles's accession 
he had taken orders. As soon as the new reign commenced 
he gave offence by an untimely recommendation to the King 
to dismiss Neile and Laud from Court. 1 After this, Whitehall 
was no place for him. As Rector of St. Matthew's in Friday 
Street he found a more sympathetic audience, and declaimed 
against Popery and Arminianism to his heart's content. He 
had criticised Montague's book with unsparing bitterness, and 
he now followed up his blow by an equally violent criticism of 
Cosin's Devotions. 

William Prynne deserves fuller recognition. Born at Swains- 
wick in the neighbourhood of Bath in 1600, he grew up under 
William tne influence of his father, a Puritan farmer, and of 
Prynne. fa s maternal grandfather, a Puritan clothier, who had 
been Mayor of Bath, and had represented his native city in 
Parliament. His was not the genial nature which seeks out 
new paths for itself, or learns from contact with the world a 
softer, gentler view of life than that which he had brought with 
him from home. He came to Oxford in 1616 to listen, at the 
most impressionable age, to tales of James's defection from the 
Protestant cause, and to be stirred to indignation by the dip- 
lomacy which aimed at placing a Catholic queen upon the 
English throne. Then came the war in Bohemia, and after the 
war in Bohemia came the war in the Palatinate. Protestantism, 
it seemed, was betrayed abroad, and from his Calvinistic 
teachers, still, at that time, dominant in the University, he 
learned to look upon Neile and Laud as the traitors who were 
undermining it at home. 

In 1621, after his father's death, Prynne established himself 
as a student of law at Lincoln's Inn. His untiring industry 

, 62I< and his stupendous memory soon enabled him to 
Prynne at m ake himself master of the whole store of legal 

Lincoln s 

inn. knowledge, and to combine with his legal knowledge 

an acquaintance with ecclesiastical writers which Selden could 

1 A Narrative of the Lift of Henry Burton. 


hardly equal. Tiie preachers at Lincoln's Inn had always been 
selected as men of large and liberal culture, but they had always 
been prominent exponents of that Calvinistic theology the 
formal completeness of which had special attractions for the 
legal mind. There it was that Reynolds and Field had preached. 
There, soon after Prynne's arrival, Donne gave place to Preston, 
the noted Master of Emanuel College, whose influence over 
Buckingham only paled before the rising star of Laud. When 
the Society opened its new chapel in 1623, the young 
Prynne found himself in the presence of many of the 
occupants of the judicial Bench, of Hobart and Ley, of Denham 
and Crewe, as well as of others whose names were in various 
ways to become noted in the stirring times to come. There 
was Noy, who had not yet invented ship-money, and Sherfield 
who had not yet broken the painted window at Salisbury. 
There, too, were Lenthall, the future Speaker of the Long Par- 
liament, and St. John, the future advocate of Hampden. With 
such companions around him Prynne kept on his steady course. 
He watched the dangers to English Protestantism from the 
entanglement in the Spanish alliance and the marriage treaty 
with France ; watched, too, the growing strength of that party 
which appealed to the early Fathers rather than to the Pro- 
testant divines of the Continent and the Puritan divines of 
Elizabethan England ; and he saw in Montague's attack upon 
predestination a blow struck at the root of Protestant theology. 1 
In 1627 Prynne's first book appeared : The Perpetuity of 
a Regenerate Man's Estate. Under the forms of theological 
argument, Prynne's contention is, in the main, a 
His first contention for the central idea of Calvinism, the 
books " immediate dependence of the individual soul upon 
God without the intervention of human or material agencies. 
But in Prynne's hands the theme was stripped of all the ima- 
ginative grandeur with which it has been so often clothed. 
His pages, with their margins crowded with references, afforded 
a palpable evidence how much he owed to his reading and his 
memory. He had no formative genius, no broad culture, no 

1 Up to this point I have made use of Mr. Bruce's fragment of Prynne's 
biography published by the Camden Society. 


sense of humour. He had no perception of the relative im- 
portance of things distasteful to him. Health's Sickness, a 
violent diatribe on the supreme wickedness of drinking healths, 
was followed by The Unloveliness of Lovelocks, an 
equally violent diatribe on the supreme wickedness 
of the long lock of hair floating over the shoulder, which was 
the latest fashion amongst courtiers. The folly of the day was 
chastised with a torrent of learned objurgation which would not 
have been out of place in a harangue directed against the seven 
deadly sins. He had nothing worse to say when he sat down 
to prepare A Brief Survey and Censure of Mr. Cosirfs Cozen- 
ing Devotions. 

It is easy to turn scornfully upon the aridity of Prynne's 

mind far easier than it is to read his books. Yet hard arid 

unintelligent as his assault upon Cosin was. he was 

His resist- . . .... ,. 

ance to but giving voice, m his own peculiar way, to the re- 
pugnance felt by strong men to the feminine neatness 
of Cosin's devotional exercises. They threatened to ' take the 
imprisoned soul and lap it in Elysium,' to teach the ardent 
spirit to forego the stern wrestling for truth and to content 
itself with the passive acknowledgment of an order in the for- 
mation of which it was to take no part Cosin would teach 
men to regard the State as dependent on the authority of the 
King, and the Church as dependent on the authority of the clergy. 

The problem presented by these disputes was a hard one 
for a statesman to solve. To Prynne it presented no difficulty 
He demands at a ^- No man was to be allowed to speak or write 
of e th S e'Ar" n8 a g amst tne Calvinistic doctrines. The conclusions 
minians. o f the Synod of Dort were to be offered as a test to 
every clergyman in England. Those who refused to subscribe 
were to be at once excluded from holding any ecclesiastical office. ' 

If it was difficult for a ruler to mediate between forms of 
thought so hostile, it was still more difficult to mediate when 
Ceremonial a dverse thoughts clothed themselves in ceremonial, 
differences. To the Calvinist the pulpit was clearly the first thing 
in the Church, the place where the Divine Word, through the 

1 See the Address to Parliament prefixed to the Survey of Cosin's 

1 628 ALTAR OR TABLEf 15 

intervention of the understanding, was dispensed to hungry 
souls. To those who recurred to older Church traditions the 
communion-table, or, as they loved to call it, the altar, was 
worthy of the highest reverence, the place where holy mysteries 
were dispensed which raised man into communion with God 
without the intervention of the understanding. The one party 
would have had the table either standing permanently under 
the pulpit or brought out occasionally for its special purpose, 
to be placed ' table wise,' or east and west* The other party 
would have had it placed permanently 'altar wise,' or north 
and south, in the place of honour at the east end. 

Elizabeth, as usual, had done her best to effect a com- 
promise. In the Injunctions issued soon after her accession, 
Elizabeth's s ^ e ^ af ^ followed the second Prayer-book in direct- 
compromise. m g < t h at t he h iy tab^ m ever y church be decently 
made and set in the place where the altar stood, and there 
commonly covered as thereto belongeth, and as shall be ap- 
pointed by the visitors ; and so to stand, saving when the 
Communion of the Sacrament is to be distributed ; at which 
time the same shall be so placed in good sort within the chan- 
cel as whereby the minister may be more conveniently heard 
of the communicants in his prayer and ministration, and the 
communicants also more conveniently and in more number 
communicate with the said minister ; and after the Communion 
done, from time to time, the same holy table to be placed where 
it stood before.' 

This compromise, which was substantially adopted in the 

Canons of 1604, ! was decidedly in favour of the Puritan view, 

the balance being weighed on the other side by a 

Difficulty of ... . . . 

enforcing strict order that the Communion should be received 
in a kneeling posture. It was one thing to direct 
conformity, another to enforce it. It was above all difficult to 
obtain compliance with a rule which demanded that a heavy 
piece of furniture should be moved backwards and forwards 
from one part of the church to the other. Jtefore the end of 

1 The Injunctions only contemplate a removal within the chancel ; the 
S2nd Canon goes further, and allows the Table to be placed in eedcsiA vel 
jusdem cancello. 


James's reign the table was permanently established at the 
east end in the Royal chapel and in all cathedrals, whilst in 
most parish churches it was permanently established in the 
middle of the church or chancel. Any attempt to remove it 
to the east end was sure to be regarded as an unwarranted in- 
novation by those who had grown accustomed to the existing 

Such an attempt was made at Grantham. The acting 
vicar, 1 a young man named Tytler, had engaged in various dis- 
putes with his parishioners. There had been quarrels 
Conflict at about the rights and income of the vicarage, quarrels 
am ' about a lectureship which the townspeople had set 
up in opposition to his teachings. In 1627 he had preached 
vigorously in defence of the forced loan, threatening, unless 
report spoke falsely, everlasting punishment to those who re- 
fused to pay it. 2 In the heat of this contention he resolved to 
restore the communion-table, or the altar as he termed it, 8 to 

1 There were two vicars of Grantham. 

4 Valentine's Speech in the House of Commons, Feb. 7, 1 629, Nicho' 
las'* Notes. 

3 Bishop Andrewes, preaching in 161?, puts it thus: "This is it in 
the Eucharist that answereth to the sacrifice in the Passover, the memorial 
to the figure. To them it was hoc facite in Jlfa prtrfigurationem ; do this 
in prefiguration of Me ; to us it is ' Do this in commemoration of Me ' 
.... By the same rules that theirs was, by the same may ours be termed 
a sacrifice. In rigour of speech, neither of them ; for to 'speak after the 
exact manner of divinity, there is but one only sacrifice, veri nominis, 
' properly so called ; ' that is Christ's death. While yet this offering was 
not, the hope of it was kept alive by the prefiguration of it in theirs. And 
after it is past, the memory of it is still kept fresh in the mind by the com- 
memoration of it in ours. So it was the will of God lhat so there might be 
with them a continual foreshowing, and with us a continual showing forth 
the Lord's death till He come again. Hence it is that what names theirs 
carried, ours do the like, and the Fathers make no scruple at it ; no more 
need we. The Apostle in the tenth chapter compareth this of ours to the 
immolata of the heathen, and to the Hebrews habemus aram matcheth it 
with the sacrifice of the Jews. And we know the rule of comparisons, they 
must be ejusdem generis. " The ecclesiastical teaching of Charles's reign 
was so deeply leavened by the teaching of Andrewes ; and Laud, in par- 
ticular, reverenced him so highly, that these words are worth particulat 


that which he held to be its appropriate site. Hitherto it had 
stood in the ' upper part of the choir,' probably in front of the 
ancient rood-screen which then divided the chancel from the 
1627. body of the church. 1 Bringing workmen with him, 
munion"tabie ^ e carr ' e( ^ ^ inside the screen and placed it against 
removed. the wall at the east end. Alderman Wheatley, the 
chief magistrate of the town, asked him by what authority he 
acted. " My authority," answered Tytler sharply, " is this, I 
have done it, and I will justify it." Wheatley and his friends 
carried the table back to its old position. There was a scuffle 
in the church. Rough words were spoken and blows were 
struck. " I care not," said the angry Vicar, "what you do with 
your old trestle. I will build me an altar of stone at my own 
charge, and fix it in the old altar place. I will never officiate 
at any other." " You shall set up no dressers of stone within 
our church," was the equally angry reply. " We will find more 
hands to throw your stones out than you will do to bring them 
in. We will all in a body make our journey to the bishop 
before we will endure it." 

Grantham was in the diocese of Lincoln, and the Bishop 
of Lincoln was Williams. Williams had no strong prejudices 
Appeal to on either side. He was fond of pomp and ceremony, 
Williams. an( } j n fa Q c hapel of his episcopal residence at 
Buckden, the table stood against the eastern wall ; but he 
had no sympathy with the doctrinal teaching which was held 
to be involved in this position, and he had a strong conviction 
of the impolicy of estranging a whole population by the forcible 

1 Much information about Grantham is collected in a work by the Rev. 
B. Sweet, a sight of which I owe to the kindness of the author, as there is 
no copy in the Museum Library ; and this special quarrel has recently been 
illustrated by the Rev. E. Venables in a paper published in the Trans- 
actions of the Lincoln Diocesan Architectural Society. I am unable to 
concur in his view that the Vicar did not mean the table to stand perma- 
nently at the east end. Williams at least understood that he did. In his 
unsigned letter to the Vicar, he quotes him as saying of the table, ' that 
the fixing thereof in the choir is so canonical that it ought not to be re- 
moved upon any occasion to the body of the church. ' The Holy Table, 
Name and Thing, p. 13. 



introduction of ceremonial forms which they regarded with de- 
testation. He decided, as every unprejudiced person 
would decide now, that the meaning of the Injunc- 
tions and Canons was that the table should 'ordinarily stand at 
the east end, and should be moved down when required for use. 
More questionable was his ruling, that the table when placed 
at the east end should stand east and west as a table, and not 
along the wall as an altar. 

" Lastly," wrote Williams to the Vicar, " whether side soever, 
you or your parish, shall first yield unto the other in these need- 
less controversies, shall remain, in my poor judgment, the more 
discreet, grave, and learned man of the two, and by that time 
you have gained some more experience in the cure of souls, 
you shall find no such ceremony equal to Christian charity." ' 

Williams has many faults to answer for. He was hot- 
tempered and worldly-minded, and when driven to bay he had 
resort to the most discreditable means in order to overpower 
his pursuers ; but he had the strong conviction that men were 
greater than either intellectual or ceremonial forms. On the 
one hand he repelled Prynne's assumption that the human mind 
could only be purified by submission to the strictest Calvinistic 
dogmatism. On the other hand he repelled Laud's assumption 
that the human mind could only be purified by submission to a 
certain external order. Though it is impossible not to think the 
better of Charles for refusing to look up to a man so shifty as 
Williams, it is impossible not to regret that he was not large- 
minded enough to utilise the counsel of one who, if he could have 
kept himself aloof from trickery and intrigue, might have been the 
Burke of the ecclesiastical politics of the seventeenth century. 

It soon became evident how much need Charles had of a 
counsellor who could have taught him that a ruler can no more 
afford to despise the currents of opinion than a navigator can 
afford to despise the set of the tides. It was only natural that 

1 Printed in The Holy Table, Name and Thing. Williams appeals to 
general practice : " If you mean by altar wise," he writes, " that the table 
should stand along close to the wall, I do not believe that ever the com- 
munion-tables were, otherwise than by casualty, so placed in country 
churches. " 


Charles should do his best to shield from future attack the 
Churchmen who had been assailed in the last session, and he 
accordingly ordered the preparation of a pardon for Montague, 
which, as he hoped, would place out of the question the con- 
Oct 7 . tinuance of his impeachment. A letter addressed 
kuer h t' s to t ^ ie new bishop ky Heath, the Attorney-General, 
Montague, shows the disquietude felt, by men most devoted to 
the prerogative, at the danger which might arise if the King 
involved himself in the quarrels of ecclesiastical controversial. 
ists. "I know," he wrote, "you are wise, and I presume you 
are charitable, and will make no misconstruction of my honest 
intentions. Haply this pardon may set your lordship free in 
foro civili ; and yet I must put your lordship in mind that the 
Court of Parliament may peradventure call things past into 
question, notwithstanding your pardon ; nay, perhaps, by your 
pardon they will rather be stirred to question you : not but 
that the King by his supreme power may pardon whatsoever 
may be questioned by any court ; yet that is not all, a scar to 
one is worse than a wound to another. You are now a father 
of our Church ; and, as a father, you will, I know, tender the 
peace and quiet of the Church. Alas, a little spot is seen on 
that white garment, and a little fire, nay a spark, may influence 
a great mass ; and how glad would the common adversary be 
to see us at odds amongst ourselves. We are not bound to 
flatter any in their humours ; but we are bound in conscience 
to prevent, nay, to avoid, all occasions of strife and contentions 
in those things specially which are so tender as the peace of 
the Church and the unity of religion. My lord, I take not 
upon me to advise your lordship, but I pray, give me leave 
to put your lordship in mind of thus much, that if your lord- 
ship will be pleased to review your book, to consult first with 
Almighty God, the God of peace, the bond of peace, the spirit 
of peace ; next, with our most gracious and good King, and 
by his approbation take away the acrimony of the style, and 
explain those things which are therein left doubtful and un- 
defined, that the orthodoxal tenets of the Church of England 
might be justified and cleared by your own pen, I am per- 
suaded all scandal would be taken away,- and your lordship 

c 2 


may be a happy instrument of reconciling and giving a stop 
to these unhappy differences and jealousies, which else may 
trouble the quiet of our Church, and may occasion the disquiet 
of our commonwealth." * 

The general drift of Heath's recommendation was in ac- 
cordance with the sentiments of the King. Neither Charles 
November, nor Laud, by whose advice in ecclesiastical matters 
Charielnor Charles was more than ever guided, had any taste 
Laud fond of for dogmatic controversy. Laud believed that it 


controversy, only served to distract the clergy from their real 
work, and he looked with the contempt of a practical man 
upon endless discussions about problems which it was im- 
possible for the human intellect to solve. It was only, he 
thought, to lose themselves in wandering mazes, that reasonable 
beings, with the world's sin and shame before them, could rack 
their brains to divine the secret 

Of Providence, Foreknowledge, Will, and Fate, 
Fixed fate, free will, foreknowledge absolute. 

Nor had he less contempt for public opinion than he had for 
abstract thought. There was something in his eyes inexpres- 
sibly mean in the notion that a teacher was to be bound to 
deliver the sentiments and inculcate the doctrines of which his 
disciples happened to approve. In the combat which he waged 
against this double danger lay the strength of his position. 
It was well that resistance should be made to Prynne's demand 
for the imposition of the test of agreement with certain abstruse 
doctrines, or, in other words, that what was believed by the 
mass of ordinary Englishmen must be stereotyped for ever on 
the minds of the rising generation. Unhappily Laud did not 
catch a glimpse no man at that time could be expected to do 
more of the truth that in full liberty of utterance lies the true 
corrective of the tyranny of public opinion. 

Laud had no hesitation in recommending that the sub- 
Laud's sug- stance of the Royal Proclamation for the peace of the 
gestion. Church which had been drawn up in 1626 should 
be reissued in a form calculated to reach the ears of all. 

* Heath to Montague, Oct. 7, 5. P. Dom. cxviii. 33. 


Orders were accordingly given for the preparation of a new 
edition of the Articles of Religion, to be prefaced by a Declara- 
tion which every minister entering upon a new cure would be 
bound to read. 1 

" Being by God's ordinance," thus ran Charles's last word 
in the controversy, " according to our just title, Defender of 
The Kind's the Faith, and supreme governor of the Church, 
Declaration. ^(4^ these our dominions, we hold it most agree- 
able to this our kingly t>ffice, and our o\vn religious zeal, to 
conserve and maintain the Church committed to our charge 
in the unity of true religion and in the bond of peace ; and 
not to suffer unnecessary disputations, altercations, or questions 
to be raised which may nourish faction both in the Church 
and commonwealth. 

" We have therefore, upon mature deliberation, and with 
the advice of so many of our Bishops as might conveniently 
be called together, thought fit to make this declaration follow- 
ing : That the Articles of the Church of England (which have 
been allowed and authorised heretofore, and which our Clergy 
generally have subscribed unto) do contain the true doctrine 
of the Church of England agreeable to God's Word : which 
we do therefore ratify and confirm ; requiring all our loving 
subjects to continue in the uniform profession thereof, and 
prohibiting the least difference from the said Articles ; which 
to that end we command to be new printed, and this our 
Declaration to be published therewith : 

" That we are supreme governor of the Church of England; 
and that if any difference arise about the external policy 
concerning the Injunctions, Canons, and other Constitutions 
whatsoever thereto belonging, the Clergy in their Convocation 
is to order and settle them, having first obtained leave under 
our broad seal so to do, and we approving their said ordinances 
and constitutions, providing that none be made contrary to the 
laws and customs of the land : 

" That out of our princely care that the Churchmen may 
do the work which is proper unto them, the Bishops and 

Heylyn's Life of Laud, p. 187. 


Clergy, from time to time in Convocation, upon their humble 
desire, shall have license under our broad seal to deliberate of, 
and to do all such things, as being made plain by them, and 
assented unto by us, shall concern the settled continuance of 
the doctrine and discipline of the Church of England now 
established ; from which we will not endure any varying or 
departing in the least degree : 

" That for the present, though some differences have been 
ill raised, yet 'we take comfort in this, that all clergymen within 
our realm have always most willingly subscribed to the Articles 
established ; which is an argument to us that they all agree in 
the true, usual, literal meaning of the said Articles ; and that 
even in those curious points in which the present differences lie, 
men of all sorts take the Articles of the Church of England to be 
for them ; which is an argument again that none of them intend 
any desertion of the Articles established : 

" That therefore in these both curious and unhappy differ- 
ences, which have for so many hundred years, in different times 
and places, exercised the Church of Christ, we will that all 
further curious search be laid aside, and these disputes shut up 
in God's promises as they be generally set forth to us in the 
Holy Scriptures, and the general meaning of the Articles of the 
Church of England according to them ; and that no man here- 
after shall either print or preach to draw the Article aside any 
way, but shall submit to it in the plain and full meaning thereof, 
and shall not put his own sense or comment to be the meaning 
of the Article, but shall take it in the literal and grammatical 
sense : 

" That if any public reader in either of our Universities, or 
any head or master of a college, or any other person respec- 
tively in either of them, shall affix any new sense to any Article, 
or shall publicly read, determine, or hold any public disputa- 
tion, or suffer any such to be held either way, in either the 
Universities or colleges respectively, or if any divine in the 
Universities shall preach or print anything either way, other 
than is already established in Convocation with our Royal 
assent ; he or they the offenders shall be liable to our displeasure, 
and the Church's censure in our Commission ecclesiastical, as 


well as any other ; and we will see there shall be due execution 
upon them." l 

The draft of the document thus prepared was approved by 
the Privy Council in the end of November or the beginning of 
TheDeciara- the following month. 2 The next step was to obtain 
proved by tne assent of both parties amongst the bishops. Mon- 
the Council, tague was induced to write a letter to Abbot, in which 
he disclaimed any wish to uphold Arminianism. 3 Abbot ac- 
cepted the hand thus held out to him, and was restored by 
Charles to such favour as Charles had to bestow upon one with 

Dec. it. whom he had so little sympathy. On December n 
restored to l ^ e Archbishop appeared once more at Whitehall, 
favour. kissed the King's hands, and was graciously bidden 
to attend the meetings of the Council. 

The next day such bishops as could be brought together 

Dec. 12 on so short an invitation met in council at Lam- 
Meeting of De th. 4 As soon as they had declared their accept- 

bisnops at * 

Lambeth. ance of the proposed Declaration, it was sent to the 

The first step taken to emphasise the Declaration was the 
issue of a proclamation calling in Montague's Appello Ccesaretn, 

in order that men might ' no more trouble themselves 
Jan. 17. with these unnecessary questions, the first occasion 

dnwrvM being taken away.' If writers continued to carry on 
called m. the Dispute, suc h or( j er should be taken with them 
that they ' should wish that they had. never thought upon these 
Pardons needless controversies.' 5 The Proclamation had 
issued. been preceded by the grant of special pardons to 
Montague, Sibthorpe, Manwaring, and Cosin, in order that the 

1 The Declaration is prefixed to the edition of the Articles of 1628, 
and is to be found in the present Book of Common Prayer. How many 
people who see it there ^re aware of its historical importance? 

2 It is mentioned in Contarini's despatch of Dec. , Venice Tran- 
scripts, R. 0, 

3 I do not believe that he went beyond this, which he might honestly 
do, on the same grounds as Laud. Pory in his letters makes him ready to 
subscribe to the Synod of Dort, which is incredible. 

4 Pory to Meade, Dec. 12, 19, Court and Times, i. 448, 451. 
4 Proclamation, Jan. 17, Rymer, xix. 26. 


Commons might be warned not to rake up the embers of the 
old quarrel. 

Oblivion for the past and silence for the future were the 
terms offered by Charles. It remained to be seen how accept- 
Charies's a ^ e they would be to the Commons, whose corn- 
terms, petency to deal with religious questions at all was 
implicitly denied by the reference in the Declaration to the 
King and Convocation as the sole constitutional authority in 
such matters. 

Though it was hardly likely that the Commons would be 
content with this, there was one man who had played a leading 
i6a8 part in the preceding session who asked nothing 
December, better. Immediately after the close of that session, 
Presidium of Wentworth had been raised to a Barony, and had 
the North. been p rorm - sed tlie Presidency of the North. On 

December 10, he became Viscount Wentworth, and five days 
later he received the patent of his Presidency. 

Dec o On the 3oth he entered upon the duties of his 

His speech office at York. In the speech l which he there de- 
livered amongst his old friends and neighbours, he 
showed no signs of regret for the part which he had played 
in the preceding session. He thanked them for the 
repudiate kindness with which they had received him after his 
exile for resisting the forced loan. What confidence 
or affection could be greater ? Yet he had not thanks for them 
alone. " Cast," he said, " the free bounties of my gracious 
master into the other scale : there weigh me, within the space 
of one year, a bird, a wandering bird cast out of the nest, a 
prisoner, planted here again in my own soil, amongst the com- 
panions of my youth ; my house honoured, myself entrusted 
with the rich dispensation of a sovereign goodness, nay assured 
of all these before I asked, before I thought of any." 

If Wentworth did not repudiate the Petition of Right, he 
Hisconstitu- repudiated the challenge of sovereignty put forward 
uonai views. on b e h a ]f o f th e Commons at the close of the ses- 
sion. " To the joint individual wellbeing of sovereignty and 

1 Printed from the TanerMSS. Ixxii. 300; in \\izAcademy, June 5, 1875. 


subjection," he said, " do I here vow all my cares and dili- 
gences through the whole course of my ministry. I confess I 
am not ignorant how some distempered minds have of late 
very far endeavoured to divide the considerations of the two; 
as if their ends were distinct, not the same, nay, in opposition ; 
a monstrous, a prodigious birth of a licentious conception, for 
so we would become all head or all members. But God be 
praised, human wisdom, common experience, Christian religion, 
teach us far otherwise." 

Wentworth's conception of the Constitution was in the 
main the same as Bacon's. " Princes," he continued, " are to 
Kings and be indulgent, nursing fathers to their people; their 
subjects. modest liberties, their sober rights ought to be pre- 
cious in their eyes, the branches of their ; government be for 
shadow for habitation, the comfort of life. They l repose safe 
and still under the protection of their sceptres. Subjects, on 
the other side, ought with solicitous eyes of jealousy to watch 
over the prerogatives of a Crown. The authority of a King 
is the keystone which closeth up the arch of order and govern- 
ment, which contains each part in due relation to the whole, 
and which once shaken, and infirmed, all the frame falls to- 
gether into a confused heap of foundation and battlement, of 
strength and beauty. 2 Furthermore, subjects must lay down 
their lives for the defence of kings freely till those offer out of 
their store freely, like our best grounds, qui majore ubertate 
gratiam quietis referre solent. 

1 " They " is added by conjecture and inserted here and elsewhere when 
it is needed. 

2 Shakespere's Coriolanus says much the same thing (act iii. scene I) : 

" My soul aches 

To know, when two authorities are up, 
Neither supreme, how soon confusion 
May enter 'twixt the gap of both and take 

The one by the other 

That is the way to lay the city flat ; 
To bring the roof to the foundation, 
And bury all, which yet distinctly ranges, 
In heaps and piles of ruin." 


" Verily there are those mutual intelligences of love and 
protection descending and loyalty ascending which should pass 
rhe obiiga- an d be the entertainments between a king and his 
uon mutual. p eO p} e> Their faithful servants must look equally 
on both, weave, twist these two together in all their counsels ; 
study, labour, to preserve each without diminishing or enlarging 
either ; and by running in the worn wonted channels, treading 
the ancient bounds, cut off early all disputes from betwixt 
them. For whatever he be which ravels forth into questions 
the right of a king and of a people shall never be able to wrap 
them up again into the comeliness and order he found 

Had he not himself ravelled forth these rights into 
questions ? In his heart doubtless he believed that it was not so. 
He had always in his fiercest denunciation of the 
wentworth King's ministers preserved his respect for the King, 
and had spoken of the King's prerogative in terms 
far more reverential than any other member of the House 
of Commons not in the actual service of the Crown. The 
utmost which he had claimed for the assembly of which he 
was a member had been the right of lifting up its voice against 
oppression and wrong; and, if its voice were disregarded, of 
refusing to grant those supplies for carrying on a useless and 
extravagant war which it was in its power to grant or to re- 
fuse. Yet they were not in the wrong who held that he had 
ranged himself on the side of the nation against the Crown. 
Facts had been too strong for even Wentworth's theories ; 
and when, in his lofty impassioned eloquence, he denounced 
attacks upon property and law, it was impossible that the 
blow which was aimed at Buckingham should not light 
upon Charles, who had in reality been the author of the 
mischief as much as Buckingham. There is, however, no 
He was him- rashness in affirming that Wentworth was unconscious 
SoulTof "he f an y cnan g e m himself. In his eyes it was the 
change. House of Commons which had changed. In March 
he had argued that the danger of anarchy and disorder came 
from the Government. In June he might have argued that 
it came from the Commons. The invitation addressed to 


him to take part in the work of government, the conde- 
scension of the King, the affable unbending of a Sovereign 
usually so reserved, would strengthen him in the conviction 
that all danger from the Crown was past. As a defender of 
order against disorder he had raised his voice in Parliament ; 
as a defender of order against disorder he would exercise at 
York the authority entrusted to him by his Sovereign. 

As he continued his speech he let fall not a few words 
which showed how little sympathy he had with Eliot in those 
His view of ecclesiastical questions which had risen to such 
ticafqae*** sudden prominence during the last days of the 
tion session. "I not only," said he, "profess my entire 

filial obedience to the Church, but also covet a sound, a 
close conjunction with the grave, the reverend clergy, that 
they to us, \ve to them, may as twins administer help to each 
other ; that ecclesiastical and civil institutions, the two sides 
of every State, may not stand alone by themselves upon their 
own single walls, subject to cleave and fall in sander ; but 
joined strongly together in the angle, where his Majesty, under 
God, is the Mistress of the corner, the whole frame may 
rise up unitate ordmata both in the spirituals and the 

Wentworth, it is plain, had accepted without hesitation the 
King's Declaration. He was ready, too, to accept his general 
Accepts the supervision in confidence that it would be used for 
supervision ^ ie benefit of the State. It was for the King, not for 
oitheCrown. the judges at Westminster, who might be actuated by 
professional jealousy, to settle the limits of the jurisdiction of 
the Council of the North. Wentworth's idea of government, 
indeed, was not one in which the people had no part. Though 
they were not to control the King, they were to 
tocJope-* counsel and co-operate. The objection which had 
been raised that there was no statute compelling 
attendance upon musters stirred him to indignation. There was 
such a statute, he replied in the first place, declaring service 
in the militia to be obligatory. What, however, if no such 
statute had been in existence? "Admit," he said, "the law 
were defective, yet then it will be confessed a necessary service 


for the State, for the defence of yourselves, wives, and children, 
so as we might manifest more discretion to wink at it than thus 
narrowly to pry into it." 

A King thoroughly well-meaning and prudent, counsellors 
intelligent and patriotic, a people even outstripping the Govern- 
ment in its zeal to carry out the royal commands, such was 
Wentworth's vision of the commonwealth which he hoped to 
see flourishing upon English soil. Arthur, it would seem, 
had come again in Charles, now that Buckingham was gone. 
England had but to sing the song of Arthur's knights : 

' Blow trumpet, for the world is white with May ; 
Blow trumpet, the long night hath roll'd away, 
Blow through the living world, " Let the King reign ! " ' 

' The King w ill follow Christ, and we the King, 
In whom high God hath breathed a secret thing. 
Fall battleaxe, and flash brand ! Let the King reign ! ' 

The powers of evil, as Wentworth would have reckoned 
them, were, however, still stirring. Before the opening of the 

session arrived, fresh tumults at the Custom-house 
January, came to trouble the hopefulness of the Government. 

turbances In defiance of the order of the Court of Exchequer, 
i^na'ge and another attempt was made to carry off goods by force 
poundage. unc jer cover of a replevin. The attack was repulsed, 
and the leaders committed to prison to await proceedings 
in the Star Chamber. 1 A few days later the King consulted 
his principal councillors on the best mode of dealing with 
so agitating a question. It was resolved that if the Houses 
The King's would ' pass the Bill as his ancestors had it, his 
resolution. Majesty' would 'do any reasonable thing to declare 
that he claims not tonnage and poundage otherwise than by 
grant of Parliament, but if this do not satisfy, then to avoid a 
breach upon just cause given, not sought by the King.' a 

Those who watched the position of affairs with an impartial 

1 Coztncil Register, Jan. 5, 7. Rush-worth, i. App. 7. 
* Rush-worth, i. 642. 


eye were of opinion that Charles was really anxious to avert 

j62 8. all chance of a quarrel with the House of Commons. 1 

December. The dark side of the picture may be shown in 

'Charles s l J 

difficulties, words which had not long before been addressed 
to Carlisle by a correspondent in England. "At home," 
he wrote, " the little thing that is done is done by my Lord 
Treasurer. They are about to satisfy some things both in 
religion and government to sweeten things to the Parliament, 
but most men doubt that they are not sincerely intended, and 
so will give little satisfaction. The Parliamentary men have 
an eye on your Lordship, and are afraid that you will join 
with my Lord Treasurer, who, though as I think an honest 
man and good patriot, has much ado to overcome and dissi- 
pate those clouds of suspicion concerning religion that are 
hung over him all this while." 2 

It was a fair account of the situation. It was not enough 

for Charles to be well-intentioned. He could not in a moment 

do away with the impression produced upon his sub- 

Parliamen- , . . , .. 11- 

tary pros- jects by the errors of the past four years, or by his 
own moral and mental isolation amongst the people 
whom he ruled. No electric cord of sympathy stretched from 
his heart to the heart of the nation. From their aims, their 
hopes, their prejudices he stood apart. His Court was no 
place where the independent gentlemen of England could find 
a chance of reaching his ear. His progresses were made to 
some hunting seat of his own, not to the houses of his subjects, 
where Elizabeth had been wont to win all hearts by her queenly 
condescension. Above all, he did not understand the meaning 
of ' those clouds of suspicion concerning religion,' which were 
so exaggerated, but so natural, and which needed to be treated 
with judicious but sympathetic firmness if they were not to 
burst up in the fiercest intolerance, or to give rise to the most 
deep-seated discord. 

1 " Fra clieci giorni si radunera il Parlamento con opinione di buon 
successo, gia S. M. invigila con ogni sollecitudine di ben preparar tutte le 
cose e di proceder piu consul tatamente di quello si fece per 1' adietro." 
Contarini to the Doge, Jan. , Ven. Transcripts, R. O. 

* Aston to Carlisle, Dec. 19, 5. P. Dom. clii. 58. 



So confident was Charles of the issue that, when the Houses 

met on January 20, l he did not even think it necessary to ex- 

jan. 20. plain what he had done. The Commons, as soon as 

Opening of they proceeded to business on the 22nd, showed 

the session. J L 

Jan. 22. that they looked upon the events of the past months 
from a point of view of their own. Complaints were at once 
heard that the speech in which the King at the close of the 
last session had claimed tonnage and poundage as his due, 
had been enrolled with the Petition of Right, and that a printed 
copy of the great statute had been circulated in the country 
' with an answer which never gave any satisfaction,' that is to 
say, with the answer which had been rejected as insufficient, 
in addition to the final answer and the speech by which it had 
been finally expounded by the King. 2 

1 The ordinary account of the debates of this session appears in its best 
form in a volume in the possession of Lord Verulam, which was described 
by Mr. Bruce in the 38th volume of the Archaologia. Mr. Bruce's copy . 
has, through Lord Verulam's kindness, been placed in my hands. The 
Parliamentary history has additional matter from other sources, and 
Nicholas's Notes (S. P, Dom. cxxxv.) give a report entirely independent, 
commencing with Jan. 27. Mr. Forster (Sir J. Eliot, ii. 197) gives from 
the MSS. at Port Eliot a speech said to have been spoken by Eliot on 
Jan. 20. I am afraid this must be relegated to the domain of speeches 
never uttered. Lord Verulam's MS. distinctly says of that day, that on it 

' nothing was done but only the settling of the committees,' and Nether- 
sole, in the letters in which he details the main occurrences of the session, 
has no mention of any such speech. 

2 The copy of the statutes of the last session in the Museum Library 


Selden then stepped forward with a weightier charge. The 
Petition of Right, he said, had been actually broken. For 
Had the liberties of state, he said, ' we know of an order made 
Rtghtbeen m ^e Exchequer, that a sheriff was commanded 
violated? no t to execute a replevin, and men's goods are taken 
away and must not be restored.' Further, ' one had lately lost 
his ears by a decree of the Star Chamber, by an arbitrary judg- 
ment.' " Next," he said, " they will take away our arms, and 
then our legs, and so our lives ; let all see we are sensible of 
this. Customs creep on us ; let us make a just representation 
hereof unto his Majesty." 

The case of Savage, of which Selden spoke so bitterly, had 
been one of extreme harshness. Either from a foolish love of 
Savage's notoriety or from actual insanity he had announced 
case. t h at F e iton had asked him to join in killing Buck- 

ingham. 1 He was sentenced in the Star Chamber to lose his 
ears. 2 It was well that Selden should raise his voice against 
the scandal, and that a limit should be set to the swelling 
jurisdiction of the Star Chamber ; 3 but it was absurd to argue 

shows that this was what was really done, and it is so put in Nethersole's 
letters to Elizabeth, S. P. Dom. cxxxiii. 4. 

1 Meade to Stuteville, Sept. 27, Nov. 8, Court and Times, i. 402, 422. 

2 Hudson, in his treatise on the Star Chamber, written before any con- 
troversy arose, holds that the Court had the power of cutting off ears in 
certain cases. 

3 According to Nethersole, Chambers's case was expressly mentioned : 
"They began to complain that the Petition of Right granted the last ses- 
sion had been already invaded in all the parts thereof : that of the liberty of 
men's persons, by the imprisonment of a merchant without showing a law- 
ful cause, the difficulty in showing a corpus habeas : that against the use of 
martial law, by the taking a man's ears off by a sentence in the Star Cham- 
ber, being an arbitrary Court, and having no power of life or limb : that of 
the property of men's goods, by the seizure of the wares of divers merchants, 
for refusing to pay the customs and impositions, there being no law to 
demand this, and the refusing of the grant of a writ of replevin when it 
was demanded." Nethersole to Elizabeth, Jan. 24, S. P. Dom. cxxxiv. 4. 
Not one of these charges necessarily involved a direct breach of the Peti- 
tion, the question of property being the very one which the judges had to 
decide. The line taken here involved the assertion that the interpretation 
of the Petition belonged to the House of Commons, not to the judges. 

The case of billeting at Chichester, Rush-worth, ii. 32, is sometimes 


that the jurisdiction of that court was in any way affected by 
the Petition of Right. 

Unluckily the question of Tonnage and Poundage, em- 
barrassing enough in itself, was complicated by the fact that 
John Rolle, one of the merchants whose goods had 
been seized, was a member of the House. " Cast 
your eyes," said the impetuous Phelips, " which way you please, 
and you shall see violations on all sides. Look on the privileges 
of this House ! Let any say if ever he recall or saw the like 
violations by inferior ministers that ever do their commands. 
They knew the party was a Parliament man. Nay, they said, 
' if all the Parliament were in you, this we would do and justify.' " 
Phelips concluded by moving for a committee on the whole 
question of the levy of tonnage and poundage. 1 

It was hardly possible to dwarf a great question more com- 
pletely than to convert the mighty struggle against unparlia- 
Question of nientary taxation into a mere dispute about privilege, 
privilege. y et tn j s was wna t the House seemed disposed to do. 
" Let the parties," said Lyttelton, " be sent for that violated 
the liberties." The Commons did not notice that in so doing 
they were leaving a strong position for a weak one. In re- 
sisting the King's claim to levy duties without consent of Par- 
liament, they were guarding the purse of the subject from 
encroachments to which no limit could be placed. In resisting 
his claim to seize the goods of a member of Parliament, they 
gave a direct advantage to a merchant who happened to be a 
member of the House over one who was less fortunate. In 
point of fact, the claim of privilege for goods in the case of 
legal proceedings is one which has long ago been abandoned 
by a triumphant Parliament. 

The privilege of Parliament had, of late years, been on the 

alleged as a breach of the Petition ; but the Petition forbade billeting 
against the householder's will. The authorities of Chichester were called 
in question for threatening to bar the gates of the city against the soldiers, 
so as to prevent the householders from exercising an option. 

1 Mr. Forster (Sir J, Eliot, ii. 205) says that Phelips alleged that 
5,ooo/. worth of goods had been sold for dues not exceeding 200!. He 
gives no authority for his statement, and it is altogether improbable. 


increase. Up to the accession of James, only three cases 

could be shown in which a member had established 
goodVfrom his claim to freedom for his goods, and in two of 

these the claim had been expressly limited to such 
goods as it was necessary for him to have with him during his 
attendance at Westminster or on his way home. 1 In James's 
reign the interference of the House to protect members' 
goods in general had become frequent, and was justified on 
the principle that those who were engaged in the public service 
ought not to be distracted from their duties by the care of 
defending their own property ; but nothing had been settled 
as to the exact time before and after each session during which 
the privilege was to last. 2 It was only indeed by a technicality 
that Rolle's case could be brought within the largest limits 
which had ever been suggested. The seizure of his goods had 
been effected on October 30, more than four months after the 
close of one session, and more than two months before the 
commencement of another; but it so happened that Parlia- 
ment had been originally prorogued to October 20, and Rolle 
was therefore supposed, by a legal fiction, to have been hindered 
in the fulfilment of duties which, as he was perfectly aware at 
the time, were not to be imposed upon him for many weeks 
to come. 

At last Charles discovered that it was unwise to allow the 
debates to proceed without a word from himself. Summoning 

the Houses to Whitehall, he assured them distinctly 
The King's that he had had no intention to levy the duties 

by his ' hereditary prerogative.' " It ever was," he 
declared, " and still is my meaning, by the gift of my people 
to enjoy it ; and my intention in my speech at the end of the 
last session was not to challenge tonnage and poundage of 
right, but for expedience de bene esse, showing you the necessity, 
not the right, by which I was to take it until you had granted 
it unto me ; assuring myself, according to your general profes- 
sion, that you wanted time and not good will to give it me." 
He had been startled, he added, by some things which had 

1 Hatsell, i. 67. Ibid. i. 99. 



been said amongst them ; but he would not complain. " The 
House's resolution," he ended by saying, " not particular men's 
speeches, shall make me judge well or ill, not doubting but, 
according to mine example, you will be deaf to all reports 
concerning me, until my words and actions speak for them- 
selves, that this session beginning with confidence one towards 
the other, it may end with a perfect good understanding be- 
tween us ; which God grant" l 

Although it would be easy to find fault with the account 

given by Charles of the language which he had employed at 

the close of the last session, it was not of the 

Moderation ,. , . , , , , i -,- , 

of the slightest importance whether he had contradicted 

himself or not. It was enough that he had renounced 

plainly all claim to levy tonnage and poundage as his right. 
Accordingly, the first impression made by the speech 

The impres- , i, T 

sion favour- was extremely favourable. It was not then the decent 
custom to listen to announcements from the throne 
in respectful silence, and the King was many times interrupted 
by sounds of applause. As the Commons left his presence, 
one of them observed that it was easy to see that Buckingham 
was no longer alive. " This speech," wrote Nethersole, " hath 
given great satisfaction for the present." Nethersole was, how- 
ever, too old a member to be ignorant where the real danger 
Thereiigbus ^7- " ^ n niatter of religion," he proceeded to say, 
difficulty. they are quiet as yet ; for it is early days. But 
the greatest business is like to be about that, notwithstanding 
that his Majesty hath called in Montague's book by a special 
proclamation. . . . His Majesty hath also granted his pardon 
z6 to Montague, Cosin, Manwaring, and Sibthorpe. But 
Bin for ton- that will hardly save some of them. God keep us in 

ijaire and -, . <> 

poundage good temper. * 

postponed. Qn the 26thj when sir j ohn Coke O ffe r ed to bring 

in a Bill for granting tonnage and poundage to the King, he was 

1 Contarini, who tells this, adds, however, significantly, " Parrm non- 
dimeno che primo d' avantarsi in questa materia vogliono aggiustar i punti 
della religione." Contarini to the Doge, y "^ 3 . Ven. Transcripts, R. O. 

* Nethersole to Elizabeth, Jan. 24, S. P. Dom. cxxxiii. 4. 


told that it was not the custom of the House to vote on a Bill 
of supply, except upon resolutions debated in committee Be 
sides, the question of the impositions must be cleared up before, 
anything could be done. 1 

"The question of the impositions had not been taken into 

account by Charles. Still, it was one on which compromise 

was possible, and it is unlikely that, if the House 

Thequeyion , , t j ... .. ., 

of the impo- had proposed to include existing impositions in the 
new Tonnage and Poundage Bill, in return for an 
abandonment of the King's claim to levy further impositions by 
prerogative, Charles would have offered any decided resistance 
to an amicable settlement of the long dispute. The fact was 
that the hearts of the members were elsewhere than in the ques- 
tion of impositions. Scarcely was the mode of pro- 
Rouse's , rr> T->M1 

speech on cedure on the lonnage and Poundage Bill settled, 
re igion. w hen Francis Rouse rose. He lived to be the authoi 
of that metrical version of the Psalms which was one day to be 
the cherished treasure in joy or in affliction of every Scottish 
household. He lived, too, to be the speaker of that strangest 
of all English political assemblies which strove in vain to hurry 
conservative England into the path of social revolution. He 
now called upon no inattentive hearers to stand firm against 
the encroachments of Popery, that confused mass of errors 
which cast down ' Kings before Popes, the precepts of God 
before the traditions of men, living and reasonable men before 
dead and senseless stocks and stones,' and against the en- 
croachments of Arminianism, ' an error that makes the grace 
of God lackey it after the will of man, that makes the sheep to 
keep the shepherd, and makes a mortal seed of an immortal 
Kirton's God.' Kirton rose to explain the source of the 
explanation. mischief. The new doctrines, he argued, had been 
introduced in order to pave the way for the betrayal of Pro- 
testantism to Rome. The' personal ambition of the clergy was 
the cause of it all. "The highest dignity," he said, "they can 
attain to here in England is an archbishopric, but a Cardinal's 
cap is not here to be had. Our endeavour must be to take 

1 This debate is only to be found in Nicholas's Notes. 
D 2 


away the root, and then the branches will decay of themselves. 
It is not the calling in of the Appeal to Caesar that will do it ; 
for if they can get bishoprics for writing of such books, we 
shall have many more that will write books in the same kind." 

So flowed on confusedly and without restraint the pent-up 
waters of indignation. In the end the whole subject of religion 
Committee was referred to a committee; and in spite of a 
on rehgwn. message from the King urging the House to proceed 
at once with the Tonnage and Poundage Bill, it was resolved 
that the report of the committee should first be heard. 

The reporter, or as we should now say, the chairman of the 

committee, was Pym, who, indeed, had been the reporter of 

Jan. 27. every committee on religion in the reign. He com- 

Pym's con- bined a. firm persuasion of the truth and importance of 

stitutional r * 

views. the Calvmistic creed with a knowledge of the world, 

and with a tact in the management of men, which was hereafter 
to raise him to the supreme leadership of the Long Parliament. l 
He clearly saw the intimate connection between all the various 
questions by which the reign had been agitated. He held that 
the path of safety lay in the combined supremacy of King and 
Parliament. The time had not yet come when men could 
venture, even in thought, to separate between the two. All 
other institutions ecclesiastical, judicial, military must work 
in accordance with rules laid down by King and Parliament to- 
gether. They must not claim to be independent of the nation 
itself, revolving in orbs of their own, and careless of the national 
conscience and the national will. 

Such a view of government was alien to the mind of Charles. 
He was himself, he held, the sun of the constitutional system. 
Parliament was but one of the many planets revolving round 
Report ofthe n ' s throne. Against this view of the case Pym's 
committee. re port was a decided protest. Parliaments, he 
ominously said, 'have enacted laws for the trial of heretics.' 
The two Convocations were but Provincial Synods. 'The 

1 Pym is frequently spoken of as a statesman for whum religious ques- 
tions had only a secondary interest. I believe this view of his character to 
be incompatible with his course in these early Parliaments. See especially 
his speech in the Parliament of 1621. 


High Commission derived its authority from Parliament, and 
the derivative could not prejudice the original.' What Pym 
had said on the religious question was said by Eliot on the 

temporal question. "I find," he declared upon the 
Chambers's reading of a petition from Chambers, "the Judges, 

the Council, Sheriffs, Customers, the Attorney and 
all conspire to trample on the liberty of the subjects." Cham- 
bers, however, ought to take a legal course, in order that, if the 
judges failed to do him justice, they might be made responsible 
for their dereliction of duty. Eliot, in short, refused to ac- 
knowledge that even the judges could be the final arbitrators 
of the constitution. King and Parliament together were the 
highest authority ; and there can be no doubt that in his own 
mind he believed that the authority of King and Parliament 
ought to be exercised in accordance with the decision of the 
House of Commons. 

In spite of renewed protests from Secretary Coke, the 
Jan. 29. House went into committee on Pym's report. The 
Eliot's tone of the whole debate was given by a great speech 
reii s ion. from Eliot. 1 He began by warning the House of 
the danger of turning its debates into a theological conference. 
Truth to be "I presume, Sir," he said, "it is not the intention 
maintained. vve now h ave to dispute the religion we profess, 
After so long a radiance and sunshine of the Gospel, it is not 
for us to draw it into question. The Gospel is that truth which 
from all antiquity is derived, that pure truth which admits no 
mixture or corruption, that truth in which this kingdom has 
been happy through a long and rare prosperity. This ground, 
therefore, let us lay for the foundation of our building that 
that truth, not with words but with actions, we will maintain. 
Sir, the sense in which our Church still receives that truth is 
contained in the Articles. There shall we find that which the 

1 Mr. Forster (Sir J. Eliof, ii. 210) gives the speech from Eliot's own 
MS. and follows the Parliamentary History in assigning it to an earlier 
day. Lord Verulam's MS. assigns it to the 26th, and explains the allusion 
to Eliot's countryman, as referring to Rouse, not to Coryton, as Mr. Forster 
supposed. Nicholas, however, gives the 29th, and his shorthand notes 
must be accepted as conclusive on a question of this kind. 


Acts of Parliament have established against all the practice of 
our adversaries. Not that it is the truth because confirmed by 
Parliament, but confirmed by Parliament because it is the truth." 
Then, aiming not, like Kirton, at imaginary ambitions, he 
pointed fearlessly to the root of the mischief : " Among the 
The King's m any causes of the envy we have contracted," he 
Declaration. ^j^ "there is none comes with a fuller face of 
danger to my thoughts than the late Declaration that was 
published in the name and title of his Majesty." It could not, 
he continued, have really proceeded from the King, or it must 
have been won from him -by misinformation. " I will so believe 
it," he cried, " of this Declaration by which more danger is 
portended than in all that has been before. For by the rest, 
in all other particulars of our fears concerning Popery or Ar- 
minianism, we are endangered by degrees; the evils approach- 
ing by gradation, one seeming as a preparation to another ; 
but in this, like an inundation, they break on us with such 
impetuous violence that, leaving art and circumstance, they 
threaten at once to overwhelm us by plain force. For, I 
beseech you, mark it. The Articles contain the grounds of our 
religion ; but the letter of those Articles, as the Declaration 
doth confess, implies a doubtful sense, of which the application 
makes the difference between us and our adversaries ; and now 
the interpretation is referred to the judgment of the prelates 
who have, by this Declaration, the concession of a power to do 
anything for the maintenance or overthrow of the truth. The 
truth, as I said, being contained in the Articles, and they having 
a double sense, upon which the differences arise, it is in the 
prelates now to order it which way they please, and so, for 
aught I know, to bring in Popery or Arminianism, to which we 
are told, we must submit. Is it a light thing to have canons of 
religion rest in the discretion of these men ? Should the rules 
and principles of our faith be squared by their affections ? " 
Some of the bishops, it was true, might ' be fathers to all ages.' 
" But," continued the orator, " they are not all such, I fear. 
Witness those two, complained of in the last Remonstrance we 
exhibited, Doctors Laud and Neile ; and you know what place 
they have ! Witness, likewise Montague, so newly now pre- 


ferred ! I reverence the order, though I honour not the man. 
Others may be named too, of the same bark and leaven, to 
whose judgments if our religion were committed, it might easily 
be discerned what resolutions they would give ; whereof even 
the procuring of this reference, this manifesto, to be made, is a 
perfect demonstration." 

Eliot had singled out the true rock of offence. Between 

the controversialists, whom Charles had hoped to silence, there 

. was a difference not to be measured by words or 

Meaning ot J 

the differ- terms. It was a difference reaching deep down into 
EHot and his the moral and spiritual basis upon which all con- 
ceptions of theology rest, a difference of habit of 
mind and religious instinct. To Eliot and to such as Eliot, 
the helps and assistances to faith upon which Cosin dwelt so 
lovingly only served to distract the mind from the contempla- 
tion of the great Taskmaster, even if they did not threaten to 
occupy His place. To them even the hard Calvinistic dogma- 
tism, so repulsive in the pages of Prynne, was full of a precious 
and tender reality. Through it they entered into the sweet 
contemplation of a ruling Personality, who had raised them 
from the dust, and who guarded them from the sin which so 
easily beset them. To the harder, sterner features of that creed 
they closed their eyes. 

Where then was the remedy ? It is easy for us to say that 
it was to be found in liberty, in the permission to each new 
where was thought to develop itself as best it might ; but the 
the remedy? verv no ti O n of religious liberty was as yet unheard of, 
and even if it had been as familiar as it is now, its bare pro- 
clamation would have been of little avail. Bishops, it seemed, 
of the stamp of Laud and Montague were to rule the Church, 
and to exercise the enormous powers of the Episcopate and 
the High Commission to depress one mode of thought and to 
elevate another. All the patronage of the Court, all the patron- 
age of the bishops, would flow in one direction. The ideas of 
a minority of religious men would prevail by other means than 
their own persuasiveness. The religion dear to the gentlemen 
of England was thus thrown on the defensive, and the House of 
Commons was not inclined to abandon it without a struggle. 


Eliot refused to allow that his faith was a matter for argu- 
ment " Some of our adversaries, you know," he said, " are 
Religion to masters of forms and ceremonies. Well, I would 
b e p e a f riia- ed g rant to their honour even the admission at our 
ment. worship of some of those great idols which they 

worship. There is a ceremony used in the Eastern Churches 
of standing at the repetition of the Creed to testify their purpose 
to maintain it, and as some had it, not only with their bodies 
upright, but with their swords drawn. Give me leave to call 
that a custom very commendable. It signified the constancy 
and readiness of their resolution to live and die in that pro- 
fession ; and that resolution I hope we have with as much 
constancy assumed, and on all occasions shall as faithfully dis- 
charge, not valuing our lives where the adventure may be neces- 
sary for the defence of our Sovereign, for the defence of our 
country, for the defence of our religion." 

" I desire," said Eliot, in conclusion, " that we may avoid 
confusion and distraction ; that we may go presently to the 
Eliot's grounds of our religion, and lay that down as a rule, 
conclusion. Then, when that is done, it will be time to take into 
consideration the breakers and offenders against this rule, and 
before we have done that, our work will be in vain. Therefore, 
first lay down the profession wherein we differ from the Ar- 
minians, and in that I shall be ready to deliver my opinion." 

It was the inevitable consequence of the failure of Charles 

to stand forth as the representative of the nation, that the 

House of Commons should thrust itself into a posi- 

Position . .... ,, ., .. ' 

taken by the tion which it could not with credit occupy. Because 
Charles treated the religion of the nation as a matter 
with which 'the nation had no concern whatever, therefore the 
Commons attempted to define the doctrine of the nation and 
to inflict penalties upon those who refused to accept it. Eliot 
and Pym said in effect, "We will not allow the religion of 
England to be changed." To carry out their purpose they 
were forced, much against their will, to convert the House of 
Commons into a school of theology one day, as they would 
have to convert it into a school of law on the next. At one 
time the bishops, at another time the judges, would be called 


to account before a body which had never studied profoundly 
the subjects with which bishops and judges were respectively 

The House shrank from the uncongenial path 

Resolution , . , . ... T . , ,- n 

of the Com- upon which it was invited to enter. It was not till 
after many suggestions had been made, that the 
following Resolution was finally adopted : 

" We the Commons now in Parliament assembled do claim, 
profess, and avow for truth the sense of the Articles of Religion 
which were established in Parliament in the reign of our late 
Queen Elizabeth, which by public acts of the Church of England, 
and by the general and concurrent exposition of the writers of 
our Church, have been delivered to us, and we do reject the 
sense of the Jesuits and Arminians." 

Like many other celebrated Parliamentary documents, this 
famous Resolution was by no means a model of precision. 
The clause about the Parliamentary title of the Articles, which 
had been suggested by Selden, was evidently intended to deny 
the claim of Convocation to legislate even on religious matters ; 
but nothing of the kind was said, and the rest of the document 
was still more indefinite. When the Committee met 

Jan. 31. 

its meaning two days afterwards, even friendly criticism professed 
Tedgecf to be that it was impossible to understand what was really 
doubtful. meant by the Resolution. 1 What, for instance, were 
the public acts of the Church to which it appealed ? According 
to Sir Nathaniel Rich, they were the Catechisms, the Lambeth 
Articles, the Irish Articles, the Acts of the Synod of Dort which 
had been approved by King James, the readings of professors 
in the Universities, the Homilies, and all other books of divines 
printed by authority. To this portentous list the lawyers de- 
murred. Nothing, said Selden, could be called a public act of 
the Church which had not received the assent of Convocation. 
Serjeant Hoskins refused to give the title even to acts of Con- 
vocation. " That only," he argued, " is said to be a public act 
which is considered of, debated, disputed, and resolved on by 
the King and all the State." 

1 This debate is only to be found in Nicholas's Nottt 


Was Convocation or Parliament to lay down the rule of 
faith for England ? Practically the bishops were supreme in 
Convocation, and, as everyone knew, the bishops owed their 
Feb. 2. appointment to the King. However much the 
mons C fd it Commons might shrink from avowing it, they had 
necessary to { O as k themselves whether their religion was safe in 

explain their 

conduct. Charles's hands. The House at least felt it necessary 
to explain their conduct in interrupting the progress of the 
Tonnage and Poundage Bill. Charles restrained his vexation, 
but not without showing signs of irritation beneath 
The King's his friendly words. He was thankful to the House, 
he said, for their confidence in his good intentions, but 
they must think that he either wanted power, which could not be, 
or that he was very ill counselled, if religion was in such danger 
as they affirmed. Eliot, at least, was not afraid of drawing the 
inference. " If these things be thus as we see," he said, " then 
he is not rightly counselled." 

As soon as Pym had once more taken the chair in the 
Committee on Religion, Eliot rose again. The result of the 
EHot pro- last meeting had not been satisfactory. The com- 
thTa 'res- ke m i ttee na d been 'unable to discover with certainty 
sive - what were those public acts to which so solemn an 

appeal had been made. Eliot now proposed to drop the in- 
vestigation. Whether the Lambeth Articles had been formally 
accepted by the Church or not, they all believed them to be 
true. Let them, therefore, boldly rely upon that. " Are there 
Arminians? for so are they properly called Look to those : 
see to what a degree they creep ; let us observe their books 
and sermons ; let us strike at them, and make our charge at 
them, and vindicate our truth that yet seems obscure, and if any 
justify themselves in their new opinions, let us deal with them, 
and these testimonies will be needful. Our truth is clear, our 
proofs will be manifest, and if these parties will dare to defend 
themselves, then seek for proofs." l 

It is impossible to deny that Eliot's proposal could only be 

1 This debate I take from Lord Verulam's MS. and Nicholas. The 
/'a;-/. Hist. (ii. 457) is confused, giving speeches really delivered on the 
following day. 


justified by the arguments which may be used to justify a revo- 
lution. The mere assent of the House of Commons 

Character of . , . , . . . . . , , 

Eliot's pro- to certain doctrinal propositions which had never 
been legally binding upon anyone was to be made 
the touchstone of orthodoxy. Unpopular theologians were to 
be summoned to give account of their actions and opinions 
before a tribunal which recognised no fixed legal procedure, 
and which would decide according to the popular instinct 
rather than according to any certain rule of law. It was 
perhaps inevitable that it should be so. The King's claim to 
rule as seemed right in his own eyes without taking the national 
conscience into account was met by the claim of the House of 
Commons to rule as seemed right in its own eyes without 
taking the rights of individual conscience into account. The 
time would come when it would be understood that liberty of 
speech and action is all that either a majority or a minority can 
fairly claim. But that time had not yet arrived. The declara- 
tion on Religion nominally imposed silence on both parties 
alike. Practically it imposed silence on those to whom the 
Calvinistic doctrines were precious, not upon those who cared 
far more about other doctrines on which they were at liberty 
to talk as much as they pleased. The restraint upon freedom 
which the Declaration undoubtedly was, was therefore answered 
by an attack upon the men from whom the restraint pro- 

As usual, Charles had studied the letter rather than the 
spirit of history. It was undoubtedly true that religious changes 
Portion of na d been effected by the authority of kings. It was 
Charles. undoubtedly true that Henry and Elizabeth had made 
use of the bishops as their instruments in Convocation and out 
of Convocation, with scant respect for any objections which might 
reach them from the House of Commons; but in so doing they 
had allowed it to be plainly seen that they were not wedded to 
any particular Church party. They took their stand as modera- 
tors above all. Charles could not do this. What he believed 
he believed thoroughly. He had no notion of watching the 
tides to gain the port which he had in sight. He had honestly 
believed his Declaration to be a healing measure, and it was 


perfectly incomprehensible to him how men, except from factious 
motives, could lash themselves into a fury against it. 

The adoption of Eliot's proposal by the House therefore 

meant nothing less than a declaration of war against the King. 

The House was ready to follow him. It resolved to 

Eliot's .... , 

proposal make inquiry into the pardons lately granted, and 
more especially to take up once more the charges 
against Montague. Addresses and remonstrances to the King 
had come to an end. They were to give place to sharp action 
against the men who owed to the King's favour their power to 
do good or evil. 

The appointment of Montague to a bishopric had been 
one of Charles's most indiscreet actions. In the House of 
Feb. 4. Commons it was fell bitterly. What, Seymour had 
uurae'feffsiiiy ar g ue d in the late debates, was the use of suppress- 
a bishop? ing a book, if its author was made a bishop? The 
House caught eagerly at a suggestion that, after all, he was not 
legally a bishop. One Jones, a bookbinder, had declared in a 
petition that at Montague's confirmation he had presented 
objections which had been passed over as irregular in form, 
and though the Solicitor-General explained that the confirma- 
tion nevertheless was perfectly legal, it was resolved that the 
question should be argued at the bar. 

The quarrel of the Commons with Montague was a quarrel 
about doctrine. Their quarrel with Cosin was a quarrel about 
ceremonies. Since the publication of his Book of Devotions, 
Cosin had been involved in charges on which he was hardly likely 
to receive a fair hearing from the House of Commons. During 
the last summer the old Norman pile which looked down from 
its green height upon the then limpid waters of the 
monieTat Wear had been the scene of religious strife. Durham 
Dur am. Cathedral had remained longer than most other 
cathedrals in the state in which a Puritan would have wished 
to see it. It was not so very long ago that the communion- 
table and the font had stood one on each side of the north 
door which leads into the choir. Before James I. died the 
hand of the reformer had come. The font was moved first 
into the nave, then into the galilee, the Lady Chapel as it had 


been of old days, the only Lady Chapel in England with the 
exception of the so-called Chapel of St. Joseph at Glastonbury, 
which stood at the west end of a church, whither it had been 
driven, as local legends told, by the persistent refusal of St. 
Cuthbert to surrender a site which he had already occupied. 
The communion-table was altogether removed, and a new table 
of stone, supported on marble pillars and adorned with figures of 
cherubim, was erected in the place where the altar had originally 
stood, and where the very same table stands, somewhat muti- 
lated, at the present day. The services assumed a statelier form. 
The congregation were bidden to stand up at the recital of the 
Nicene Creed, which was now sung to the music of an organ 
and of other instruments. Old copes, according to the direc- 
tions of the Canons of 1604, were sought out and refurbished 
for the use of the officiating ministers. The custom of bowing 
towards the east on entering the church, which had been pre- 
scribed by the ancient statutes of the Cathedral, was revived, 
and two large candlesticks appeared upon the communion- 
table, though the candles do not seem to have been lighted 
except when it was dark. 

Such things could not be done without awakening opposi- 
tion, and that opposition found a mouthpiece in one of the 
1628. prebendaries of the Cathedral, Peter Smart. For 
J ul v 2 7- seven years he abstained from preaching in a church 
set men. which he held to be contaminated by these innova- 
tions. His subsequent history shows him to have been an 
inaccurate, if not a consciously mendacious, reporter of things 
which had passed before his eyes. On July 27, I628, 1 he 
resolved to ascend the Cathedral pulpit to bear testimony 
against the changes which he disliked. It may be that the Re- 
monstrance of the Commons filled his mind with zeal, as it had 
filled the disordered mind of Felton. His sermon was a bitter 
invective against his colleagues. He charged them with at- 
tempting to revive and raise up again Jewish types and figures 
long since dead and buried, in bringing in altars instead of 
tables, priests instead of ministers, propitiatory sacrifices instead 

1 The edition of his sermon printed in 1640, gives July 7, instead of 
the true date, as appears from the Act of the Ecclesiastical Commissioners. 
See An Illustration of NeaPs Hist, of the Puritans, Durham, 17^6. 


of sacraments. In all this, he added, they had but copied 
1 that painted harlot, the Church of Rome.' In short, they were 
bent on introducing the Mass into the midst of an English 

Smart was at once convened before the Ecclesiastical 
Commissioners for the Province of York. He appealed to the 
Julys?, secular courts. At the summer assizes he preferred 
T'a; : nst dingS an indictment against the principal prebendaries 
Smart. for their conduct relating to the communion-table, 
standing at the Nicene Creed, and other ceremonies of the 
Church. Though Whitelocke, the judge on circuit, had taken 
care, in the new chapel at his own house at Fawley, to place the 
communion-table by the side of the pulpit, 1 he seems to have 
thought, as many others thought, that a cathedral was not to 
be bound by the regulations which were fitted for a parish 
church. He allowed himself to be conducted over the Cathe- 
dral, expressed his approval of all that he saw, and refused 
Smart's application. Upon this the Dean and Chaptei 
sequestered Smart's prebend for an offence ' against 
good manners, Christian charity, and the statutes of the Church 

, 62g- of Durham.' In the following January he was trans- 
Jan. 29. m itted to the High Commission Court of the Province 
of Canterbury, where his judges would at least be so far im- 
partial that they would not feel personally aggrieved by his 
sermon. 2 

Amongst the Durham prebendaries Cosin was the most 
active and influential. In the preceding spring he had been 

1628. present at a conversation which turned upon the right 

April. o f excommunication. Cosin maintained that the 

versation clergy held it directly from Christ. A certain Mr. 

R yai Su- Pleasance, who was present, was of a different opinion. 

premacy. y^ have ^,, ^ ^ from ^ Ring He cjm 

excommunicate as well as you." " The exercise of it indeed," 
replied Cosin, " is under the King. But the power is derived 
from Christ and by virtue of holy orders." The discourse then 

1 This appears from Lord Bute's MS. of Whitclocke's Memorials. 
3 Illustration of Ntal, 47-5?. The Dean and Chapter to NerJ 
23, S. P. Dom. cxiii. 65. 


took a wider turn. " How," said Pleasance, " can the King be 
said to be Head of the Church?" " Who says it now?" was 
Cosin's reply. The title, he explained, though capable of inno- 
cent interpretation, was liable to be misunderstood. It had 
been dropped by Queen Elizabeth, 1 and had ceased to be 
binding upon anyone. It was enough to say that the King was 
' supreme governor of Church and State,' and that he might by 
his ' power of supreme dominion command churchmen at any 
time to do their office, or punish them for neglect of it . . : 
External co-action, . . . whereby men were forced to obey 
the jurisdiction of the Church was only from the King ; but 
the power of spiritual jurisdiction itself was from Christ, who 
had given it to his Apostles, and they to their successors by or- 

Such a conversation, after passing over the tongues of a few 
gossiping reporters, was easily converted into an attack upon 

the Royal Supremacy. The attention of the Attorney- 
November. . , 
Charge General was called to it by one of Smart s friends. ^ 

cSin?' Charles was not likely to pay attention to such a 
1629. charge against such a man ; and another of Smart s 
e ' 4 ' friends, thinking that he would obtain a more favour- 
able hearing in the House of Commons, drew up a petition full 
of charges against Cosin, some of them perhaps true, some of 
them afterwards proved to be entirely false. 

Before any inquiry could be made into the truth of the 
petition, Phelips, who had been sent to ask the Attorney-General 
The pardons by whose authority he had drawn the obnoxious par- 
tague'Tnd dons, returned with the answer. Heath explained 
others. t h at ^g h a( j d ra wn Montague's pardon by his Ma- 
jesty's express command. The order for preparing the pardons 
for Sibthorpe, Manwaring, and Cosin had been conveyed to 
him by Bishop Neile. 3 The House ordered that a sifting in- 
quiry should be instituted into the history of these pardons, and 

1 See, however, Coke's argument on the other side, 4 Inst. cap. 74. 

2 Cosin to Laud, Nov. 22, S. P. Dom. cxxi. 33. 

8 The Bishop of Chichester is the name given in Lord Verulam's MS. 
Nicholas is surely right in giving that of the Bishop of Winchester, whose 
connection with the affair is referred to in a subsequent speech of Eliot's. 


into the reasons why the charges brought against Cosin had 
been allowed to sleep. Cosin himself was ordered to appear on 
the 23rd. The House, it seemed, was more jealous of the 
King's honour than he was himself. 

In one form or another, the vital question, whether Parliament 

or Convocation was the supreme legislator in religious matters 

Feb was constantly recurring. It was suggested that the 

Question Articles as usually printed differed in one important 

about the r 

authority of clause from the Articles as mentioned in the Act 
of Parliament of 1571, from which, according to 
icgedto the contention of the House of Commons, they 
folded ""on derived their binding force. The twentieth Article 
theArudes. nQw conta i ne( j a c i ause asserting that "The Church 

hath power to decree rites and ceremonies, and authority in 
controversies of faith." Such a clause might easily be quoted 
in support of the pretensions of Convocation. It had been ab- 
sent from the printed book acknowledged by Parliament in 1 5 7 1. 
" By adding these two lines," it was said of the existing addition, 
" it gives power to alter religion." * 

In all probability the clause in question had been added by 
Elizabeth herself after the Articles passed through Convocation 

in 1562, though the alteration had been tacitly ac 
thechuwia cepted by the clergy. For some time editions of the 

Articles accepted or omitted the clause at pleasure. 
In the edition acknowledged by Parliament in 1571 it was not 
to be found. In the same year it was adopted by Convocation ; 
and though for a few years longer the practice of the printers 
continued to vary, it had found a place in every edition subse- 
quent to 1581. Till the question arose between Parliament and 
Convocation in 1629, no practical importance had attached 
itself either to its adoption or to its omission. 2 

The question of authority reached too far to be settled 

without a struggle. Unhappily, its existence jaun- 
Attack upon diced the minds of those who felt strongly on one 

side of the conflict. The simple question of Cosin's 
very innocent conversation about the Royal Supremacy as- 

1 Nicholas's Notes. 

3 flardwick, Hist, of the Articles, 143. Cardwell, Synodalia, i. 34, 53. 


sumed portentous dimensions in Eliot's eyes. It was always a 
satisfaction to the men who were opposing the King's claims to 
persuade themselves that they were in reality on his side, and 
Eliot accused Heath of stifling a charge which amounted to 
little less than high treason. Yet Heath's account 
given to the House must have been accepted as satis- 
factory, as no further proceedings were taken in the matter. In 
the course of the defence, however, he mentioned the name of 
the person who had communicated to him the King's directions 
that he should drop the prosecution, and Charles took offence 
at this revelation of his secrets. It was only after making very 
humble apologies indeed that Heath was restored to favour. 1 

The attempt to prove that Montague was not a bishop 
failed as completely as the attempt to prove that Cosin was a 
The question traitor. Counsel was heard in support of the ob- 
gue^co'nfir- jection which had been taken ; but an argument of 
mation. gj r Henry Marten satisfied the House that it could 
not be sustained. 

Great as was the eagerness of the Commons to listen to 

charges against the men whom they disliked, they had not 

Feb. 7 . ceased to be amenable to reason. At last it was 

Charges hoped that - an unanswerable case had been found. 

*l^.UnM 1 

Neile. Sherfield, the member for Salisbury, whose name was 

a few years later to blaze forth into notoriety in a Star Chamber 
prosecution, reported to the Committee on Religion that Neile 
had caused words to be inserted in the pardons to Montague 
and the others, the effect of which was to free them from the 
penalties for erroneous, unorthodox, and false opinions. 2 These 
words had doubtlessly been simply intended to guard against 
accusations founded upon the utterance of opinions which 
might be alleged by Parliament to be erroneous, unorthodox, or 
false, but they looked like a premeditated attempt to encourage 
the promulgation of heretical doctrine. Sir Daniel Norton 
followed by a still more telling accusation. Neile, he said, had 

1 Contarini to the Doge, Feb. , Van. Transcripts, R. 0. 

2 Erroneas opiniones vel minus orthodoxas, doctrinas falsas, earumque 
publications, scandalize dicta, male gesta. Nicholas's Notes. 



sent for Dr. Moore, one of the prebendaries of his cathedral at 
Winchester, and told him ' that he had oftentimes heard him 
preach before King James, and that he had used to preach 
against Popery.' " This," the Bishop was alleged to have said, 
"was well liked of then, but now you must not do so." "If 
occasion serves," Moore had replied, " I will not spare to do the 
like again." "The times," rejoined Neile, "are not the same, 
and therefore you must not do so." 

What Neile in all probability had intended to say was, that 
the King disapproved of the violent polemical objurgations 
Neiie to be which too often took the place of moral or religious 
sent for. instruction which ought to form the staple of a 
preacher's work; but no such explanation in favour of the 
bishop who had been so busy in obtaining the pardons was 
likely to gain a hearing. " In this Lord," l said Eliot, " is con- 
tracted all the danger we fear ; for he that procured those 
pardons, may be the author of these new opinions ; and I 
doubt not but his Majesty, being informed thereof, will leave 
him to the justice of the House, and I hope their exhalations 
will not raise jealousies between his Majesty and us. Let the 
Doctor be sent for, to justify it." 

The power to silence opponents was the real object in dis- 
pute. Hitherto the Commons had shown themselves far more 
inquisitorial than the Bishops. Yet there was one 

Feb. II. , . . , , . . .. 

Seiden's voice amongst them which was raised in favour of 
liberty. Seiden's unenthusiastic nature and wide 
learning had made him utterly indifferent to the theological 
disputes with which the air resounded, and he thought it very 
hard that anyone should suffer because he held one view or 
another on a speculative question. He was no more born to 
be a martyr of liberty than a martyr of orthodoxy. In his 
chambers in the Temple he loved to pose his friends with 
sudden questions, revealing his indifference to the issues which 
seemed so momentous. On the whole, he attached himself to 
the popular party. But his object was not to seize upon power 
in order that it might be turned against those who held it. 

1 Not " Laud," as in the Parl. Hist. 


Power itself, he held, needed to be diminished. His friends 
had, therefore, to resign themselves to listen to arguments which 
must have appeared to them to be the merest quixotry, and 
which made it certain that if ever, by some unexpected turn of 
the wheel of fortune, they found themselves in the possession 
of authority, they might count on Selden's opposition. In the 
last session, he had startled the House by an opinion, that no 
Englishman could legally be pressed into military service. At 
the opening of this session he had declared, with more applause, 
that the Star Chamber had no legal right to cut off ears, He 
now threw out a far more startling suggestion. Cer- 

His opinion . . . . e 

on the liberty tain printers presented a petition, complaining that 
tmg ' Laud's chaplain had refused to license books which 
they described as orthodox, whilst he had licensed books which 
they described as ' holding opinions of Arminianism and Popery,' 
and that the printers who had acted in defiance of this decision 
had been punished by the High Commission. To this Selden 
rose. " There is no law," he said, " to prevent the printing of 
any book in England, but only a decree in the Star Chamber. 
Therefore that a man should be fined, imprisoned, and his 
goods taken from him, is a great invasion of the liberty of the 
subject ; and, therefore, I desire that a law may be made on 
this." Selden was before his time. The question was referred 
to a select committee, and no more was heard of it. If the 
Commons had taken any step at all in the matter it would only 
have been to wrest from their adversaries a power which they 
would gladly have exercised themselves. 

The debate which followed upon Neile's share in procuring 
the pardons is memorable for the first public ap- 

Neile and , , 

the pardons pearance of a man who was one day to have some- 
thing to say upon liberty of conscience far more 
determinately than Selden. 

Oliver Cromwell was 'born at Huntingdon in 1599. His 
father, Robert, was a younger son of Sir Henry Cromwell, the 
Oliver Golden Knight, whose splendour at Hinchinbrook 

fora!?* 611 ' 5 nad been the subject of wonder to a past generation, 
history. The family, like so many others which rose to his- 
torical fame in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, had 


thriven by the dissolution of the monasteries. The old nunnery 
at Hinchinbrook had been given by Thomas Cromwell to a 
young kinsman who took the name of Cromwell, in addition 
to, or in exchange for, that of Williams which he inherited 
Sir Richard fr m ms father. Sir Richard Cromwell was fortu- 
Cromweii. nate enou gh to preserve the King's favour after his 
patron's fall. His descendants were not as prudent as himself, 
and the prodigality of his son and grandson wasted estates 
The Golden which had been suddenly acquired. When James 
oillercfoTn- arrived in England, the Golden Knight was dead. 
we "- His son, Sir Oliver, the uncle of the future Lord 

Protector, welcomed his new Sovereign with that magnificence 
and prodigality which was the failing of the family. Such vast 
expenditure could not be supported for ever, and in 1627, 
Sir Oliver Cromwell was compelled to sell Hinchinbrook to 
Sidney Montague, a brother of the Earl of Manchester, and to 
retire to Ramsey, where he ended his days in such circum- 
stances as his reduced income would allow. 

Robert Cromwell settled close by Hinchinbrook, at the 
Robert \itt\e town of Huntingdon. He had a younger 
Cromwell, brother's portion, and a younger brother's encourage- 
ment to thrift. His son, Oliver, grew up connected, through 
Oliver's ms unc ^ e > w ' tn tnc chief families of the county, and 
childhood, connected, through his place of residence, with the 
townsmen, amongst whom his father occupied a leading 
position. Educated at the free grammar-school of the place, 
under Dr. Beard, and then passing to Cambridge in 1616, he 
was probably recalled to Huntingdon by his father's death in 
the following year, to take charge of the land which Robert 
Cromwell had owned, and to care with all the strength and ten- 
derness of his nature for his mother and his sisters. Early 
responsibility developed his sterling qualities. A visit made 
to London for the purpose of studying law, a study without 
which, in that age, no gentleman's education was complete, 
His mar- k^i when he was only in his twenty-second year, 
riage. t o a marriage with Elizabeth Bourchier, the gentle 

sharer of his anxieties and greatness, who preserved the while- 
ness of her simplicity alike in the modest house at Huntingdon 


and in the stately galleries of Whitehall. It is generally be- 
lieved that the marriage was arranged by Oliver's aunt, the 
mother of John Hampden. In the beginning of 
MemteTfor 1628, his fellow-townsmen chose him to represent 
Huntingdon. ^^ in the ^^ p ar ij ament w hi c h was to claim the 

Petition of Right. To have been so chosen whilst still in his 
twenty-ninth year, by those who had the most intimate ac- 
quaintance with his daily life, was the best possible testimony 
to his high character. 

Of the wild calumnies repeated of him in after years it is 
unnecessary to say a word. 1 So far as it is possible to catch a 
His moral glimpse of the human figure which they surround, 
character. we see a y OU th endowed with a vigorous frame and 
strong animal spirits, not unmindful of his studies, mastering 
the difficulties of the Latin language, so far at least as to be 
able to converse in it in later years, though he did not satisfy 
the requirements of professed scholars. It was the same with 
his other studies. From mathematics, history, and law he 
extracted just as much as would be serviceable to him in his 
battle with the world ; and it may perhaps be taken as the 
residuum of a vast mass of scandal, that he loved his jest, and 
was fond of outdoor exercise, sometimes allowing his pursuit 
of amusement to interrupt his severer employments. On the 
whole, there was in him a balance of the mental, the moral, and 
the physical powers which must have rendered him a notable 
example of the sound mind in the sound body, without which 
but little can be accomplished in the world. 

Not one man in a thousand who is possessed of a sound 
mind and a sound body raises himself from obscurity. Great 
Crisis in his achievements come but to those who have learned 
hfe - to sacrifice themselves to the ideal which flashes 

before the inner eye of conscience. To some the wakening 
to higher aims and a nobler life comes gradually and insensibly; 
to some it comes with a painful struggle : but to none was the 
sense of change so complete, and the struggle so intensified as 
to the Puritan of the seventeenth century. It may be that 

1 They are collected, accompanied by judicious reflections, in Sanford's 
Studies of tlie Great Rebellion, 174. 


Ciomwell's marriage and return to Huntingdon may have 
awakened new thoughts in his mind. The pleadings of his 
young wife may have wound themselves round his heart, and 
the return to the teaching of his schoolmaster, Dr. Beard, 
may have influenced him deeply. The struggle was great in 
proportion to the energy of his character. No mere resolution 
to improve would satisfy him. He learned to look upon his 
old life as utterly vile in the sight of God and man. " You 
know," he wrote, not many years afterwards, "what my manner 
of life hath been. Oh ! I lived in and loved darkness, and 
hated light. I was chief, the chief of sinners. This is true, 
I hated godliness, yet God had mercy on me." l It is not 
necessary to take these words literally. It is enough to believe 
that his soul was crushed with a sense of sinfulness. Dr. Beard, 
it may be suspected, had much to do with strengthening him 
in this frame of mind. The book of which he was the author, 
The Theatre of God's Judgment displayed, is full of instances 
of immediate temporal penalties inflicted on the breach of 
God's laws. The higher spiritual penalty would be that upon 
which Cromwell's mind would fix itself; but the feeling of 
his own inability to meet the requirements of the Judge would 
be all the more intense. His strong nature could find no 
nurture in dogmatic assertions or in ceremonial devotion. He 
longed for purity of heart, for reality of life. What was he 
that he should silence the voice of judgment, of a judgment 
which searched to the very depth of his being, pronouncing 
him unclean. We may well believe that long months of inward 
conflict harrowed his soul a time of impaired health, of strange 
visionary imaginations and of drear melancholy despondency. 
Then at last came light, as it has come to so many others, in 
the beaming forth, from that Bible which he cherished, of the 
bright image of the Redeemer, of the Helper whose loving 
kindness would purify his life and ennoble his aims. Crom- 
well's misery lasted as long as he gazed with painful introspec- 
tion into himself; it was lightened as soon as he forgot himself. 
Yet he ever held that the misery was a necessary preliminary 

1 Carlyle (ed. 1857), i. So. 


to the joy. " Who ever," he assured his daughters, " tasted that 
the Lord is gracious, without some sense of self, vanity, and 
badness ? " 

There was no vanity in the course which Cromwell took in 

Parliament. During the long session of 1628 he had remained 

silent. He was quite conscious that he was not 

Misconduct . . _,. . . , 

in Pariia- master of the burning oratory of Eliot, or ot the clear 
precision of Selden. The great lawyers who bore 
the weight of the struggle for the Petition of Right needed no 
help from him. As the battle changed its ground, it must have 
gained in interest in his eyes. Yet though the growing fondness 
for ceremonial observances was to him a return to the dark 
ways of carnal ordinances, he watched it all in silence, till a 
moment came when he became aware that he was in posses- 
sion of the knowledge of a fact which might be of interest to 
His first tne House. When Sherfield charged Neile with 
speech. originating the pardons, Cromwell remembered that 
he had heard a story in Neile's disfavour from Dr. Beard. It 
was an old story enough now. It was the custom that on the 
Sunday after Easter, a preacher should be selected to sum up 
and repeat the main points of three other sermons which had 
been preached before the Lord Mayor and Aldermen from a 
pulpit in the open air in Spital Square. In some year not later 
than 1617, the first sermons had been assigned to Dr. Ala blaster. 
It became known that Beard, who was appointed to recapitulate 
what the preacher had said, intended to controvert him as hav- 
ing spoken with approval of ' tenets of Popery.' Cromwell now 
told, in a few plain words, how Neile, who as Bishop of Lincoln 
was at that time Beard's diocesan, had sent for him, charging him 
' not to preach any doctrine contrary to that which Alablaster 
had delivered.' Beard, however, had persisted in his intention, 
had attacked Alablaster's opinions, and had been reprimanded 
by Neile for his conduct. 1 

1 Nicholas, who took down the speeches in shorthand, gives the speech 
thus : " Mr. Cromwell saith that Dr. Beard told him that one Dr. Ala- 
blaster did at the Spital preach in a sermon tenets of Popery, and Beard 
being to repeat the same, the now Bishop of Winton, then Bishop of Lin- 


We have no means of knowing what Alablaster's arguments 
were ; and it is easy to understand that the sight of one preacher 
ascending the pulpit to criticise the opinions of another which 
he was expected to condense would be icgarded as unseemly 
by a bishop like Neile. The House was in no mood to examine 
into details. Phelips quoted a Dr. Marshall, who had been 
treated by Neile as Moore and Beard had been treated. 
Stronger charges followed. Sir Robert Crane had heard from 
' a very honest man, and a good divine ' that Cosin had been 
seen reading a book called The Preparation for the Mass, 
during the administration of the Communion. Waller, too, had 
heard that Cosin had ordered a printer who was setting up the 
type for an edition of the Prayer-book, to substitute the word 
' priest ' for ' minister.' Marshall and Beard were sent for to give 
their evidence ; and a select committee was appointed ' to con- 
sider of those things that have been already agitated concerning 
the innovation of our religion, together with the cause of the 
innovation and the remedy.' 

Some time must elapse before all the witnesses could appear. 
Dr. Moore arrived on the i3th. It. was quite true, he said, 
Feb r that Neile had forbidden him to preach against 
Moore's Popery. At Winchester Cathedral, since Neile's 
arrival, the communion-table had been removed to 
the place of the altar. On it had been placed ' two high 
candlesticks, which, they say, were the same that were used at 
the marriage of Queen Mary.' Then came a story which looks 
as if it was but the repetition of the wildest gossip. " Dr. 
Price . . . hath used at his house to have two napkins laid 
across, which done, he himself maketh a low obeisance to that 

coin, did send for Dr. Beard, and charge him, as his diocesan, not to 
preach any doctrine contrary to that which Alablaster had delivered, and 
when Dr. Beard did, by the advice of Bishop Felton, preach against Dr. 
Alablaster's sermon and person, Dr. Neile, now Bishop of \Vinton, did 
reprehend him, the said Beard, for it." The remainder of the speech, as 
printed from the Parl. Hist, by Carlyle, referring to Manwaring, and con- 
cluding, " If these are the steps to Church-preferment, what are we to 
expect ? " is taken from another speech by another speaker, on a different 


cross, and causes his man to put at one end of that cross a glass 
of sack, at another end a glass of claret, at another a cup of 
beer, and in the midst a cup of March beer." 1 

As this was all the evidence to be had for the present, the 
House had time to turn its attention to the Roman Catholics. 

Selden, who had no thought of including them in 
at cierken- his anticipations of liberty, complained that of the 

ten priests seized in that College at Clerkemvell, 
which had played such a curious part at the opening of the last 
session, only one had been condemned. Sir Francis Davey 
said that only three had even been tried, and that though two 
of these who were acquitted, together with the seven who had 
not been brought to trial, had refused to take the oath of alle- 
giance, they had not been retained in prison on that score. 

The next day it came out that the condemned priest 

Feb. 14. * 

Priests had been reprieved by a warrant from Chief Justice 
reprieve . jjyde. The other nine persons had been released 
on bail by an order conveyed from the King by the Earl of 
Dorset In the eyes of the House this carefulness not to shed 
blood for religion's sake was treason to Protestantism. Yet 
what could they do ? They repeated in chorus that the King 
was innocent : his ministers had done it all. It was very 
natural. All the old hereditary respect for the monarchy, all 
the consciousness of services rendered in the days of their 
fathers, stood in the way of a rupture with the King, if it could 
by any means be avoided. It would be difficult to avoid it 
much longer. 

After all, ready as the Commons had been to welcome every 
ThsCom- suspicion against Neile and Cosin, it must not be 
monsac- forcotten that they were not judges, but accusers. 

cusers, not * J 

judges. When the evidence was brought into shape, it would 
have to be carried before the Lords, and the Lords would have 
to listen to the defence and to pronounce judgment. 

In the meanwhile the enforced cessation of the debates 
on religion till the witnesses appeared gave time for the re- 
sumption of the debates on tonnage and poundage. A 

1 Nic/iobs's Noles. 

'$8 THE SP:SS10N OF 1629. CH. Lxvir. 

compromise was far less probable than it had been a fortnight 
before. Angry feelings had arisen, and they were not 
pou"dfg e an likely to be soothed by the knowledge that the pos- 
session of these duties would enable the King to set 
the ecclesiastical feeling of the House at defiance. Charles, on 
the other hand, could not forget that for more than a century 
the duties had been granted formally at the commencement of 
every reign, and the attempt of the House of Commons to con- 
vert this formal consent into a right of refusal must have seemed 
to him an unwarrantable shifting of the balance of the constitu- 
tion ; much in the same way as we should now regard an 
attempt of the Sovereign to exercise the right of veto upon Bills 
presented by Parliament. 

There was one circumstance, however, which Charles had 
it cannot be forgotten. Beyond the legal question lay the ques- 
ou't'se'tt'iing ti n f t^ 6 sa fety of property. If the Commons gave 
o'/lh^im" 011 way, they not merely conceded the right of levying 
positions. an ascertained revenue, but of extracting from com- 
merce an undefined amount which might entirely ruin the trade 
of the kingdom. 

The 1 2th had been fixed as the day on which the discussion 
was to be resumed in a committee of the whole House. Before 

, that day had arrived the feeling on both sides was 

Mutual pro- embittered by mutual provocation. On the one 

vocation. handj a sher j ff of London had been sent by the 

Commons to the Tower for giving unsatisfactory answers about 
the seizure of the merchants' goods. On the other hand, pro- 
ceedings had been commenced in the Star Chamber against 
some of the merchants, apparently to punish them for the 
riotous manner in which they had carried off these very goods; l 
and in the course of these proceedings a subpoena had been 
directed to Rolle, commanding his attendance. 

It was impossible to deny that a breach of privilege had 

1 In Nicholas's Notes the information is said to have been for not paying 
the duties ; but the account given above seems the only way of explaining 
how the matter got into the Star Chamber. The non-payment would be 
for the Exchequer Court to punish if it chose to do so. 


been committed in summoning a member during the actual 
Feb. ii. session. The Attorney-General frankly acknow- 
l i"i^ h d e ! n " ledged the mistake. But the House was not satisfied, 
manded. \\r g near( j t h e King say," observed Kirton, "he 
took not nor did claim the subsidy of tonnage and poundage 
as his right ; and yet, by the information exhibited in the Star 
Chamber, we see his Majesty's ministers do proceed otherwise." 
It was resolved to take these proceedings into consideration, 
together with the grievances of the merchants. 1 

It was most unlikely that, until the ecclesiastical diffi- 
culties had been settled, any arrangement satisfactory to both 
Feb. 12. parties could be made on this question of tonnage 
leadership anc * poundage. Under Eliot's leadership no such 
makes an arrangement was possible. Full of enthusiasm for 

arrangement r 

impossible, the supremacy of the House of Commons, he reverted 
to his old tactics of calling the King's ministers to account, 
whilst he treated the King himself with the highest respect, a 
respect which was doubtless altogether unfeigned. He could 
not see that he was striking away all the supports of the Royal 
authority, as it had established itself under the Tudor sove- 
reigns, and that whether his course was to be justified by pre- 
cedents and reason or not, it was one to which no Sovereign with 
the slightest feeling of self-respect was likely to submit. He 
now proposed to dissociate the farmers of the customs 

He advises r . _ T . , , 

an attack from the King. He argued that as tnese men had 
faVmersV paid a certain sum into the Exchequer for the right 
the customs. Q f i evvm g tne duties, the Crown was not involved in 
the matter at all. If the farmers failed to recoup themselves 
by levying duties, it was upon them, and not upon the King, 
that the loss would fall. Let the barons of the Exchequer be 
told that they had been misinformed. If they once knew that 
the goods had been seized for the farmers, and not for the 
King, the ground of their decision would be taken away, and 
they would allow the replevins to take their course. 

Eliot's proposal to go round the difficulty was met by an 

1 The fullest report is in Nicholas's Notes. The Par I. Hist, transfers, 
the speech to the nth. 


argument from Noy, that it would be better to meet it in the face. 
Noy's sug- As ne had attempted to mediate in the last session, he 
Kestion. attempted to mediate now. He began by stating his 
opinion that tonnage and poundage was 'an aid and subsidy,' 
which ultimately fell upon the whole body of the nation. They 
were the greatest hinderers of peace who sought to take it by 
force. It would be necessary for the Commons to rid themselves 
of the proceedings in the Exchequer and in the Star Chamber, 
or the King's claim would be confirmed by their silence. The 
best way to do this would be to go or. with the grant, inserting 
in the Bill a clause declaring that all judgments based on the 
King's claim to levy the duties were void and of no effect. As 
soon as such a Bill was drawn up the King would doubtless 
restore the goods which had been seized. 1 

Whatever chance there was of maintaining the right claimed 

by the House without a breach with the King lay in the prompt 

adoption of Noy's proposal. Unhappily Selden threw 

Seldenpro- . . . /. l / 

posesames- the weight of his authority on the other side. It is 
afurtVf e possible that his constitutional timidity led him to 
Exchequer. a pp rove o f fae j ess di rec t mode of facing the diffi- 
culty. Whatever his motive may have been he argued that 
what had been done had been the act of the King's ministers, 
The mes- not f tne King himself. Let a message be sent to 
^ se - the Barons of the Exchequer to inform them that the 

goods in question had been seized for tonnage and poundage. 
When they knew that they would doubtless alter their decree. 
Noy and other members who agreed with him urged that it 

1 Nicholas's Notes. The feeling of the House was probably well 
expressed by Nethersole. "On Thursday last,," he writes, " the matter 
of tonnage and poundage was taken into consideration, and by what was 
then said, it is easy to see that the House will give it to the King your 
brother, without any diminution in point of profit, but not without a very 
full acknowledgment and declaration of the right of the subject and cessa- 
tion of all that hath been done to the prejudice thereof either by the King 
your father or your brother." The question of impositions, in short, was 
to be settled as well as that of tonnage and poundage. But there was 
more behind. The writer adds that nothing had been done since 'nor will 
be much till religion be settled, whereon the hearts of all the House are 
earnestly set.' Nethersole to Elizabeth, Feb. 14, S. P. Dom. cxxxv. 40. 


would be better for the merchants to plead their own cause in 
the Exchequer ; but the House refused to accept the sugges- 
tion, and ordered that a message should be sent drawing the 
attention of the barons to the fact that the goods seized had 
been seized for tonnage and poundage. 1 

As yet the House had not openly engaged in a conflict with 

the courts of law ; but such a conflict was now perilously near. 

The Barons of the Exchequer were not likely to 

Feb. 14. ' 

Reply of the submit to dictation from the Commons, in whatever 
words it might be veiled. They replied that the 
attempt to recover the goods by replevin 'was no lawful action.' 
If the owners considered themselves to be wronged, they might 
' take such order as the law requireth.' 

What answer could the Commons make ? They appointed 
a committee to search the records of the Exchequer in the hope 
of convicting the barons of acting in defiance of their own pre- 
cedents. In the meanwhile Eliot's proposal to call the officials 
to account was adopted, and the Custom House officers were 
summoned to the bar. 

When the officers appeared, the questions put to them 
showed that those who guided the deliberations of the House 
Feb. 19. had resolved to restrict the ground of dispute to a 
The Custom question of privilege. They were asked whether 
officers at the they had known Rolle to be a member of Parliament 
when they seized his goods. The officer to whom the 
j?riv?iege f question was put replied that he was not aware that a 
raised. member's goods as well as his person were covered by 
the privilege, and May, who alone, with the feeble Coke, sus- 
tained the weight of the defence of the Government, declared 
that it had never been heard ' till this Parliament ' that a mem- 
ber ' should have his goods privileged against the King, and he 
is not yet satisfied that he ought.' Eliot urged the House simply 
to discuss the question whether the officers were delinquents or 
not. The Commons were indeed in a great strait ; but voices 
were not wanting to urge them to take some broader course. 
Those who objected to see a great constitutional question 

1 Nicholas's Notes. 


narrowed to a mere dispute over privilege had the weighty 
Pym's objeo support of Pym. "The liberties of this House," he 
J the'cUs- sa * d > " are inferior to the liberties of this kingdom, 
pute. To determine the privilege of this House is but a 

mean matter, and the main end is to establish possession of the 
subjects, and to take off the commission and records and orders 
that are against us. This is the main business ; and the way 
to sweeten the business with the King, and to certify ourselves, 
is, first, to settle these things, and then we may in good time 
proceed to vindicate our own privileges." 

In Pym's words was to be heard the prudence of the great 
tactician of the Long Parliament. His skill was formed upon 
Pym's pro- tne truest perception of the conditions of action. He 
cedure. f e |j. instinctively that the great cause of the subject's 
rights ought to be brought into the foreground, and that the 
petty question of Rolle's privilege, resting as it did on pre- 
cedents not absolutely certain, and involving an unfair advan- 
tage to members of the House over other merchants, ought to 
be kept in the background. 

Once more Selden failed to rise to the height of the argu- 
ment. If a point of privilege was raised, he said, all other 
matters must give place. Sir Nathaniel Rich pointed 

Selden's , , , ~ , , , 

course. out the risk into which Selden was bringing the 
Rich's sug- House. He asked whether it was true that a member 
of Parliament had privilege for his goods against the 
King. "We have not used," he added, "when anything has 
been done by the King's command, to the breach of a privilege 
of this House, to fly en the officer that hath put such com- 
mands in question ; but have by petition gone to the King and 
it hath ever succeeded well." He suggested that the mode of 
proceeding should be referred to a committee. 

Eliot would not hear of such a suggestion. " Place your 
liberty," he cried, " in what sphere you will, if it be not to 
Eliot will preserve the privileges of this House ; for if we were 
notacceptit. nO {. h ere t o debate and right ourselves and the king- 
dom in their liberties, where had all our liberty been at this 
day?" The course proposed by Pym, however, was not left 
unsupported. Digges and Seymour spoke warmly for it. May 


thought that the time was come to strike in for the King. 
" God forbid," he said, " that the King's commands should be 
put for delinquency. When that is done his crown is at stake.''' 1 
Eliot turned aside from the main issue to wrap himself once 
more in the robes of privilege. " Mr. Chancellor of the 
Duchy," he replied to May, " said we were making a question 
of bringing the King's command for a delinquency. But the 
question is whether an act done on pretence of the King's 
command, to the breach of the privileges, be a delinquency 
or no. I have heard the King cannot command a thing 
which tends to the breach of Parliament privilege, and the 
Chancellor of the Duchy said that if we did go about to bring 
the King's commands for a delinquency, the King's crown was 
at stake, which if we should go about were an act of the highest 
treason." May rose to explain. He had accused no one,, but 
if the officers were punished after justifying themselves on the 
King's command, the King might think that his crown was, at 
stake, ' seeing he should be no more obeyed.' 2 

May had touched the heart of the question. The question 

of responsibility was the question of sovereignty. If that was 

decided against Charles a complete revolution would 

Importance // i i i i i 

of the ques- have been effected in the relations between the King 
and his subjects, as those relations had been under- 
stood by four generations of Englishmen. 

The Commons shrank, as well they might, from facing so 
tremendous an issue. After two days of further discussion the 
Feb. 21. committee came to a vote on the restricted question 
the C co5n- f of privilege. Their resolution declared that a mem- 
mons. fog,. o f th e House ought to have privilege for his 

goods as well as for his person. Did this mean, asked May, 
that he ought to have privilege against the King ? The com- 
mittee did its best to avoid a reply. Many of the members 
expressed a conviction that the goods had been seized without 
orders, till the production of the King's warrants made the 

1 " Actum est de imperio," in May's words, as in Eliot's and his own 
second speech. 

2 Only from Nicholas's Notes do we learn the full importance of this 
debate. Hitherto we have only had a fragment of it. 


subterfuge no longer possible. In the vote which was taken, 
the King's name indeed was not mentioned, but it was resolved 
that Rolle was to have privilege for his goods. 1 

It was impossible for Charles to keep silence any longer. 
The next day was Sunday, and, as usual, a full Council was 
held in the afternoon. The King attended its meet- 
The king ing, and declared ' that what was formerly done by 
his farmers and the officers of the Customs was done 
by his own direction and commandment of his Privy Council, 
himself for the most part being present in Council, and if he had 
been at any time from the Council Board, yet he was acquainted 
with their doings, and gave full direction in it ; and therefore 
could not in this sever the act of the officers from his own act, 
neither could his officers suffer from it without high dishonour 
to his Majesty.' To this declaration the Council assented 
unanimously, and Sir John Coke was ordered to inform the 
House of the King's words. 2 

When the morning came, however, Coke did not at first 
deliver the message, waiting perhaps to see if the House might 
Feb. 23. be inclined to extricate itself without the interven- 
oHkers^ote t ^ on of the King. May pleaded hard for an amicable 
punished? solution. "We all agree," he said, " that a wound 
is given, and there is oil and vinegar to put into it. If we put 
in oil, we may cure it ; if vinegar, I know not what may be the 
success. Think upon some course to have restitution made." 3 

Eliot waved the suggestion haughtily away. He had con- 
fidence, he said, in the justice of the King. Let them proceed 
to consider the delinquency of these men. It may be that a 
murmur of applause showed that Eliot had carried the com- 
mittee with him. At all events Coke thought that the time was 
Coke an- come for the fulfilment of his mission. "I must 

KtaKwS" now " he said > " s P eak P lain English." The officers 
cision. had ac ted by the King's command, and the step pro- 
posed to be taken against them concerned him highly ' in point 
of government.' He could not sacrifice his honour by giving 
way to the distinctions which appeared to satisfy others. 

1 Nicholas's Notes. * Rushworth, i. 659. 

1 So far from Nicholas ; what follows is from Lord Verulam's MS 


It was now plain to the dullest understanding that the 
House would have to deal with the King and not with his 
officers. Charles would not follow the Tudor habit of throwing 
over his ministers to escape responsibility. The House ad- 
journed to the 25th, to afford time for consideration. 

If anything was needed to confirm Charles in his resolution, 
it niust have been the knowledge that if he surrendered the 
Feb. 24. Custom House officers he would next be called upon 
tionson 50 ' 11 " to surrender the bishops. On the 24th a sub-com- 
Reiigion. mittee had completed the Resolutions which were to 
be submitted to the House on the religious difficulty. 1 

The Resolutions repeated the grievances of which com- 
plaints had been made in the debates. Popery and Arminianism 
Grievances were spreading, communion-tables had been removed, 
recited. ^ o ^ e se (. as a it ars a t the eastern end of churches. 
Candlesticks had been placed on them, and obeisance made 
towards them. Congregations had been ordered to stand up 
at the singing of the Gloria Patri, and women coming to be 
churched had been compelled to wear veils. Then there was 
the ' setting up of pictures and lights and images in churches, 
praying towards the east, crossing' and other objectionable 
gestures. The orthodox doctrine had been suppressed the doc- 
trine which had the support of the Prayer-book, of the Homilies 
and Catechism, of Jewel's writings, of the public determination 
of divines, of the Lambeth Articles, of the Irish Articles, of the 
resolutions of the Synod of Dort, as well as of the uniform con- 
sent of writers whose works had been published by authority, 
and of the submission enjoined by the two Universities upon the 
opponents of the Lambeth Articles. Those who now opposed 
this orthodox doctrine had been preferred to bishoprics and 
deaneries, and some prelates, Neile and Laud in particular, had 
been taken into special favour, and having gotten the chief ad- 
ministration of ecclesiastical affairs under his Majesty, had dis- 
countenanced and hindered the preferment of those that were 
orthodox, and favoured and preferred such as were contrary. 

1 Parl. Hist. iii. 483. There is some difficulty about the date of this. 
Lord Verulam's MS. here becomes utterly confused, and other MSS. give 
Varying dates. I have followed Harl. MS. 4296, fol. 65 b. 


In the last clause lies, to modern ears, the real weight of 
the Commons' case. The King's authority was being used in 
Remedies a one sided way to secure the undue preponderance 
proposed. o f unpopular opinions. The remedy proposed was 
the old remedy of compulsory uniformity. The laws were to 
be put in force against ' Popish opinions ' and ' superstitious 
ceremonies,' ' Severe punishment ' was to be inflicted on those 
who should ' publish, either by word or writing, anything contrary 
to orthodoxy.' The books of Montague and Cosin were to be 
burnt, and ' authors and abettors of those Popish and Arminian 
innovations,' to be condignly punished. 'Good order' was to 
be taken ' for licensing of books.' ' Bishoprics and other eccle- 
siastical preferments ' were to be conferred only ' upon pious, 
learned, and orthodox men.' Parliament was to consider how 
means might be provided for maintaining 'a godly and able 
minister in every parish church,' and care was to be taken that 
the Ecclesiastical Commissioners might be men ' approved for 
integrity of life and soundness of opinion.' 

If the House should adopt these resolutions and there was 
slight probability that it would refuse to do so it would be but 
to little purpose to allay the strife about the responsibility of 
officials. Of liberty, and of all the treasures which that word 
conveys, there was no thought in the minds of the members of 
the House of Commons. The idea had not yet presented 
itself even to the leaders. It would be the merest pedantry to 
blame them for not anticipating the thought of days to come. 
Only through suffering does any people enter into rest. To 
strive ever forwards amidst bewildering entanglements and dis- 
tracted wanderings from the true path is the law of progress for 
a nation as truly as for an individual. Happy is that nation 
which keeps its courage high and its heart pure, that the eyes 
of its understanding may in due time be enlightened. 

The day February 25 on which the House was to resume 

its debates, brought an order of the King commanding an ad- 

Feb. 25. journment for another week, and to this order the 

Attempts to House submitted. Charles fondly hoped that the 

avert a J " 

rupture. Commons might be induced to reconsider their 
position. His ageu'-s were busy with the leaders to induce them 


to desist from their pretensions, in order that, as he afterwards 
said, ' a better and more right understanding might be begotten 
between him and them.' l It could not be. In the State, King 
and Commons were striving for the mastery. In the Church the 
policy of silence imposed on theological disputes and of per- 
mission to revert to older ceremonial practices, was met by the 
policy of the absolute exclusion of opinions and ceremonies to 
which the existing generation had ceased to be accustomed. 

It is hardly likely that under any circumstances the breach 
could have been long averted ; but the conflict -in its actual 
Eliot re- form was distinctly the work of Eliot. He now re- 
*Z\tohe' s l ve d to urge the House to appeal from the King to 
country. the country. When the House met again, on March 2, 
it would probably only meet to be re-adjourned, and Eliot 
resolved to take advantage of its claim to adjourn itself in 
order to move a protest which might go forth to the world 
before the dissolution which was certain to follow. 

Of the leaders who had stood by his side in the great struggle 
for the Petition of Right, Selden alone supported him now. 
Pym had relapsed into silence ever since the course which he 
had proposed had been overborne by the torrent of Eliot's 
eloquence. Phelips, Lyttelton, and Digges, with many another 
whose voice had once been loud, took no part in his counsels; 
but there was plenty of indignation amongst members of less 
.repute, and amongst these he found not a few who were ready 
March 2. to assist him in carrying out his plan. His chief 
ment a rJ- urn " difficulty was to obtain a few minutes before the 
sisted. Speaker left the chair, and arrangements were accord- 
ingly made to resist the usual hurried adjournment. ;; : 

As was expected, when the morning of March 2 came, the 
Speaker, Sir John Finch, declared the King's pleasure that 
the House should be adjourned to the ioth. 2 He then put the 

1 Pat /. Hist. ii. 502. Contarini to the Doge, March -;, Ven. Tran 
scripts, J?. O. 

2 There are two accounts of the proceedings of this day which throw 
a much clearer light upon them than anything which has been hitherto 
published ; one in Nicholas's Notes, the other amongst the State Papers, 
Dom. cxxxviii. 6, 7, Excepting in the case of one or two unimportant 

F 2 


formal question to which, under such circumstances, a negative 
had never been returned. Shouts of ' No ! ' ' No ! ' rose on every 
side. Eliot rose, as if to speak to the question of adjournment. 
Finch did hio best to check him. He had, he said, an absolute 
command from his Majesty instantly to leave the chair if any 
one attempted to speak. 

The question of the right of adjournment thus brought 
to an issue was not beyond dispute. The King had again 
and again directed adjournments. The Lords had 
adjourn- always considered the command as binding. The 
Commons had been accustomed to adjourn them- 
selves in order to avoid the appearance of submission to the 
King's authority, though they had never refused to comply with 
his wishes. 

Eliot had made up his mind that the time had arrived when 
the House ought to make a practical use of the right of self- 
The Speaker adjournment which he claimed for it. As Finch 
held down, moved to leave the chair, Denzil Holies and Benjamin 
Valentine stepped forward, seized him by the arms, and thrust 
him back into his seat. May and Edmondes, with the other 
Privy Councillors present, hurried to his assistance. For a 
moment he broke away from his captors. But his triumph was 
short. Crowds of members barred the way, and Holies and 
Valentine seized him again and pushed him back into his seat. 
" God's wounds !" cried Holies, "you shall sit till we please to 
rise." Physical force was clearly not on Finch's side, and he 
made no further effort to escape. 1 

speeches the order in which everything occurred becomes quite clear 
from the agreement of these authorities. Some valuable information is to 
be had from Lord Verulam's MS., of which this part was published by 
Mr. Bruce in Archcrologia, xxxviii. 237. Mr. Forster's narrative is very in- 
correct, and the paper printed at p. 244 was certainly not the paper read 
by Eliot. Consequently the charges which he brings against Heath of 
distorting facts are founded upon a very imperfect knowledge of the 

1 As Finch spoke frequently afterwards, it is probable that Holies and 
Valentine did not continue to hold him, contenting themselves with watch- 
ing him. Mr. Forster separated the two seizures, but I have followed 


As soon as quiet had been restored Eliot's voice was heard 
claiming for the Hours the right to adjourn itself. His Majesty, 
Eliot claims ^ e went on to say, must have been misinformed, or 
to be heard, ^ad b een led to believe that they had ' trenched too 
far upon the power of sovereignty.' They had done nothing 
Proposes a unjust, and as the King was just, there could be no 
declaration, difference between them. A short declaration of 
their intentions had been prepared, which he asked to be 
allowed to put to the question. 

Eliot spoke from the highest bench at the back of the 
House, and he threw the paper forward in order that some one 
The Speaker m front might hand it to the clerk to be read even if 
^ow^t'to be tne Speaker refused his consent to its reading. Shouts 
read. o f " Read ! read ! " were raised in the midst of a 

confused struggle. The crowd swayed backwards and forwards 
around the chair. In the midst of the excited throng, Coryton 
struck one of his fellow-members. 1 The Speaker defended his 
rights. He knew no instance, he said, in which the House 
had continued to transact business after a command from his 
Majesty to adjourn. " What would any of you do," he added 
plaintively, " if you were in my place ? Let not my desire to 
serve you faithfully be my ruin." 

There was no room for the suggestion that the Speaker was 
not properly authorised to order the adjournment. He had 
had the command, he said, from the King's own lips. Eliot 
rejoined that they were quite ready to adjourn in obedience to 
his Majesty, but the declaration must first be read. Strode in 
a few words acknowledged the reason for this persistency. " 1 
desire the same," he said, " that we may not be turned off like 
scattered sheep, as we were at the end of the last session, and 
have a scorn put on us in print, but that we may leave some- 
thing behind us." They wished that their voice should be 

Heath's information (Parl. Hist. ii. 510), which gives a very probable 
account of the matter. The theory that the Government was always in- 
venting falsehoods seems to me quite unreasonable. 

1 This incident is placed here by Heath, and is made probable by the 
words used by Coryton soon afterwards, in which he speaks of himself as 
having been to blame as well as the rest. 


heard as a rallying cry to the nation in the conflict which had 

One after another rose to urge upon the Speaker the duty 
of obeying the order of the House. The order of the House, 
said Eliot, would be sufficient to excuse him with 
1 the King. If he refused obedience, he should be 
the House. called to the bar. 

At this intimation of defiance of the King's command, some 
members rose to leave the House. Orders were at once given 
The door to tne Scrjeant-at-Arms to shut the door, that no 
locked. ta j es m }ght be carried to those who were outside. 
The Serjeant-at-Arms hesitated to obey, and Sir Miles Hobart, 
at his own suggestion, was directed to close the doors. He 
swiftly turned the lock and put the key in his pocket. 1 

As soon as order was restored, Finch's voice was heard 

once more. To be called to the bar, he said, was one of the 

greatest miseries which could befall him. Then, after 

Finch begs 

to be allowed a few words from others, he begged to be allowed to 
go to the King, as in the last session. He had done 
them no ill-offices then, and he would do them none now! " It 
I do not return, and that speedily," he ended by saying, " tear 
me in pieces." 

Cries of ' Ay ! ' and ' No ! ' showed that there was a division 
of opinion. Eliot again threatened the Speaker with the con- 
Renewed sequences of persisting in his refusal. No man, he 
hfuTtoput sa i^> na ^ ever been blasted in that House, 'but a 
the question. curse a t length fell upon him.' He asked that his 
paper might be returned to him. He would read it himself, 
that the House and the world might know the loyalty of the 
affections of those who had prepared it. Before the paper was 
returned, Strode made one more effort to have the question 
regularly put. " You have protested yourself," he said to the 
Speaker, "to be our servant, but if you do not what we com- 
mand you, that protestation of yours is but a compliment. The 

1 The usual account makes the shutting ol the doors consequent upon 
an attempt of the Serjeant to carry off the mace. But a comparison of the 
three principal narratives induces me to think that the Serjeant received 
orders from the King to bring away the mace at a later period. 


Scripture saith, ' His servants ye are whom ye obey.' If you 
will not obey us, you are not our servant." 

Finch's position was indeed a hard one. Elected by the 
Commons, but with a tacit regard to a previous selection by 
His difficult tne King, the Speaker had hitherto served as a link 
position. between the Crown and the House over which he 
presided. In Elizabeth's days it had been easy for a Speaker 
to serve two masters. It was no longer possible now. The 
strain of the breaking constitution fell upon him. " I am not 
the less the King's servant," he said piteously, " for being yours. 
I will not say I will not put the reading of the paper to the 
question, but I must say, I dare not." 

Upon this final refusal Eliot raised his voice. 1 He told his 
hearers, silent enough now, how religion had been attacked ; 
Eiiofs how Arminianism was the pioneer to Popery ; how 
speech. there was a power above the law which checked the 
magistrates in the execution of justice. Those who exercised 
this power had been the authors of the interruptions in this 
place, whose guilt and fear of punishment had cast the House 
upon the rocks. Amongst these evil councillors were some 
prelates of the Church, such as in all ages have been ready for 
innovation and disturbance, though at this time more than any. 
Them he denounced as enemies to his Majesty. And behind 
them stood another figure more base and sinister still. 
The Lord Treasurer himself was the prime agent of 
iton ' iniquity. " I fear," continued Eliot, " in his person 
is contracted the very root and principle of these evils. I find 
him building upon the old grounds and foundations which 
were built by the Duke of Buckingham, his great master. His 
counsels, I am doubtful, begat the sad issue of the last session, 
and from this cause that unhappy conclusion came." Not only 
was Weston ' the head of all the Papists,' and the root of all 
the dangers to which religion was exposed, but the course 

1 Eliot began, " I shall now express,' 1 &c., as printed by Mr. Forster 
(ii. 244). Then followed, " The miserable condition," &c., which Mr. 
I'orster believed to have been spoken at the beginning of the debate (ii. 
240). The concluding phrase, " And for myself," &c. (ii. 245) followed 


which he had taken in the question of tonnage and poundage had 

been adopted from a deliberate design of subverting 

the trade of the country, and in the end of subverting 

the government. When commerce had been ruined, and the 

wooden walls of England were no longer in existence, the State 

would be at the mercy of its neighbours. "These things," cried 

Eliot, " would have been made more apparent if time had been 

for it, and I hope to have time to do it yet." 

Once more Eliot's lightly-kindled imagination had played 
him false. The charge of deliberate treason was as unfounded 
as it was improbable. In the wild excitement of that day 
everything seemed credible to him, and the proud confidence 
of his bearing stamped upon his listening auditors the firm 
assurance that he was not dealing his shafts at random. At 
last, turning to the paper which he held in his hand, he briefly 
explained its meaning. "There is in this paper," 

Explains the ... , 

proposed he said, " a protestation against those persons that 
are innovators in religion, against those that are 
introducers of any. new customs ; and a protestation against 
those that shall execute such commands for tonnage and 
poundage, and a protestation against merchants that, if any 
merchant shall pay any such duties, he as all the rest shall be 
as capital enemies of the State, and whensoever we shall sit 
here again, if I be here as I think I shall I will deliver 
myself more at large, and fall upon the person of that man." ' 

Eliot had made known what the contents of the paper were ; 
but unless his resolutions could be formally put by the Speaker, 
they would not go forth as more than the expression 
of the e proteft of his private opinion. Coryton urged that it would 
again urged. ^ ^ or t ^ e jj n g' s advantage that the paper should be 
read. He had need of help from the House, and those persons 
that had been named kept it from him. The members had 
come there with a full resolution to grant not merely tonnage 

1 This last paragraph is from S. P. Dom, cxxxviii. 6. It is more life- 
like than the words given in Nicholas's Notes. "If ever I serve again in 
Parliament I shall proceed against them as capital enemies of the State." 
It must be acknowledged, however, that the latter form agrees better with 
that printed by Mr. Forster (ii. 245). 

1629 A LONG WRANGLE. 7.3 

and poundage, but all other necessary supplies as well. Shouts 
of ' All ! All ! ' encouraged Coryton to proceed. " Shall every 
man," he said, "that hath broken the law have the liberty 
to pretend the King's commands ? " Ought that transcendent 
Court, highest of all others, to permit the laws to be broken. 
" Therefore," he ended, " I shall move that his Majesty may be 
moved from this House to advise with his grave and learned 
Council, and to leave out those that have been here noted to 
be ill councillors both for the King and kingdom." 

Theie was one in that assembly whose ears tingled with 
shame and indignation. Jerome Weston, the Lord Treasurer's 

eldest son, stood up to defend his father. "We 
fended by have here in consideration," he said, "human laws 

which, as they be many, so there is one eternal law 
of God, that we should love our neighbours as ourselves. 
Now, what can be more unjust than, without true grounds, to 
lay aspersions upon a noble person ? Would any of us think 
it just to be done to ourselves ? Let not the Lord Treasurer 
be prejudged. He has as faithful a heart to Church and 
commonwealth as any man sitting here." 

Then, as now, the House of Commons was wisely tolerant 
of divergence of opinion, especially when it was prompted by 

domestic affection. Even in that supreme hour of 
oTkeTsyi- conflict the call was not altogether without effect. 

The reckless Clement Coke, indeed, struck the blow 
home. " Whoever," he said, " laid tonnage and poundage on 
the people without the gift of Parliament is an enemy to* the 
commonwealth, and that this great person has done this, there 
are not light suspicions only upon him, but apparent proofs." 
Eliot's ex- But Eliot was not so entirely thrown off his balance 
pianation. as to assum e guilt which had not been proved. He 
had no intention, he declared, of asking the House to take his 
assertions as evidence. He hoped to be allowed to produce 
his proofs when they met again. 

Seiden The discussion threatened to become endless 

threatens to f Qr want o f definite aim. Seiden brought it back to 

place c*Iiot 

m the chair. t h e original issue by telling the Speaker once more 
that he was bound to put the question. If he refused, .they 


had in him a master instead of a servant. He would virtually 
abdicate his office, and they ought then to proceed to the 
choice of another Speaker. For the present Selden contented 
himself with moving that Eliot should take the chair and put 
the Resolutions to the House. 1 

An unexpected obstacle arose. Eliot having, as it would 
seem, despaired of obtaining a formal vote upon his Resolu- 
tions, had thrown the paper in the fire. " I think," 
burnt his said Holies, reasonably enough, " that gentleman 
hath done very ill to burn that paper." Eliot grace- 
fully submitted to the correction. "I give that gentleman 
great thanks for reproving me for the burning of that paper, 
and of all obligations that have passed between us I hold this 
for the greatest." With the exception of a formal motion made 
shortly, afterwards, these words of courtesy were the last utter- 
ance of the high-souled man within the walls of the House of 

Whatever was to be done must be done speedily. As 
Holies rose, a knocking was heard at the door. The King 
The Serjeant ^ a ^ sent f r tne Serjeant to bring away the mace, 
sent for. Th e House would not yet part with the symbol of 
authority ; but after some delay, the serjeant was allowed to 
go. Hobart let him out, and locked the door after him again. 2 

As soon as order was restored, there was a fresh discussion 
on the propriety of naming the Lord Treasurer. 

Heyman _. T _ , _,. 

upbraids the Sir Peter Heyman turned once more upon Finch : 
*" er ' " I am sorry," he said, " that you must be made 
an instrument to cut up the liberties of the subject by the 

1 Nicholas's Notes. 

2 Heath's information speaks of the serjeant as having been detained 
a prisoner. On the other hand, Lord Verulani's MS. and Hargtave MS. 
299, fol. 139 b, plainly speak of his being put out. I have tried to re- 
concile the two. From Nicholas's Notes we learn that the knocking was 
heard when Holies rose, and from S. P. Don. cxxxviii. 6, that the mes- 
senger was still at the door after Eliot's reply. This delay would enable 
Heath to speak of the serjeant as a prisoner. Mr. Forster brings no 
authority for his statement that the serjeant laid his hand on the mace to 
take it away, and that ' a fierce cry arose to shut the door.' Sir J. Elio( t 
ii. 244, The door had been shut long before. 


roots. I am sorry you are a Kentish man, and that you are 
of that name which hath borne some good reputation in our 
country. The Speaker of the House of Commons is our mouth, 
and if our mouth will be sullen and will not speak when we 
would have it, it should be bitten by .the teeth, and ought to 
be made an example ; and, for my part, I think it not fit you 
should escape without some mark of punishment to be set 
upon you by the House." 

It was easier to speak of punishment than to inflict it. 
Maxwell, the Usher of the Black Rod, was now knocking at 
Black Rod tne door with a message from the King. The 
at the door, moments were fast flying, and there was no time 
for longer deliberation. Charles had sent for his guard to 
force a way into the House. Not a minute was to be lost in 
idle recrimination. Holies threw himself into the 

Holies reads . , , . , , . , 

the Resoiu- breach. " Since that paper is burnt, he said, " I 
conceive I cannot do his Majesty nor my country 
better service than to deliver to this House what was con- 
tained in it, which, as I remember, was thus much in 
effect : l 

"Whosoever shall bring in innovation in religion, or by 
favour seek to extend or introduce Popery or Arminianism, or 
The Three other opinions disagreeing from the true and ortho- 
Resolutions, dox Church, shall be reputed a capital enemy to this 
kingdom and the commonwealth. 

" Whosoever shall counsel or advise the taking and levying 
of the subsidies of tonnage and poundage, not being granted 
by Parliament, or shall be an actor or an instrument therein, 
shall be likewise reputed an innovator in the government, and 
a capital enemy to this kingdom and commonwealth. 

" If any merchant or other person whatsoever shall volun- 
tarily yield or pay the said subsidies of tonnage and poundage, 
not being granted by Parliament, he shall likewise be reputed 
a betrayer of the liberty of England, and an enemy to the 
same." 2 

It was hopeless to apply again to Speaker or Clerk. Holies 

1 Nicholas's Notes. z Parl. Hist. ii. 491. 


put the question himself. Hearty shouts of ' Ay ! ' ' Ay ! ' adopted 
the defiance which he flung in the face of the Kin?. 

The Resolu- 
tions The House then voted its own adjournment. The 

adopted. , , 1111 

The House door was thrown open at last, and the members 
adjourns. poured forth to convey to the outer world the tidings 
of their high resolve. Eleven years were to pass away before 
the representatives of the country were permitted to cross that 
threshold again. 




IMMEDIATELY after the adjournment a Proclamation for the 
dissolution of Parliament was drawn up and signed by the 
Dissolution King. Charles threw the whole blame upon the in- 
mentdls- science of those who had resisted his command to 
cussed. adjourn. 1 Yet it was not without hesitation that the 
decisive step was taken. Coventry was supported by a con- 
siderable following in the Council in asking that a milder course 
should be adopted. Weston, whose impeachment had been 
called for by Eliot, argued strongly on the other side. For 
two days the contending parties strove with one another, and it 

March 4. was on ty on the 4th that the Proclamation was made 
ment'of"" public. 2 The day before, Eliot and eight other 
members. members of the Commons had been summoned to 
appear before the Board. Seven of them presented themselves 
before the Council, and were committed either to the Tower or 
to other prisons. The other two were subsequently captured, 
and shared the fate of their friends. 3 

The Houses had stood adjourned to the loth, and Charles 
thought it well to go in person to the House of Lords, in order 

March 10. that when the words of dissolution were pronounced 
The dissoiu- he might take the opportunity of expressing his con- 
nounced. fidence in the Peers. It was observed that on his 
return he looked pleased with his day's work, as if he had at 

1 Proclamation, March 2, Rymcr, xix. 29. 

* Contarini to the Doge, March -r, Ven, Transcripts, R. O. 

* Council Register, March 3, 4. 


last freed himself from a yoke to which he had long sub- 
mitted with difficulty. 1 

Charles's feeling of self-satisfaction was in truth the most 
ominous element in the political prospect. No candid person 

can find fault with him for dissolving Parliament. 
sei^Lftisfac- The House of Commons which had just ceased to 

exist had been elected under circumstances of peculiar 
excitement, and it had ended by clamouring for stringent 
measures of repression which would have been fatal to the free 
development of thought in England. Unhappily Charles had 

been himself to blame foi the explosion by his unwise 
dissolution promotion of men holding unpopular opinions. If, 

recognising the true causes of his unpopularity, he 
had wished to gain a year or two to recover the confidence of 
the nation, no one but a constitutional purist would blame him 
for refusing to abdicate his hereditary authority. A wiser man 
might well have shrunk from placing himself unreservedly in 
the hands of a House of Commons which claimed supremacy 
in the State whilst crying down that essential condition of 
liberty of thought and speech, without which parliamentary 
government is only a moie crushing form of tyranny. 

The Declaration set forth by the King 2 to justify the dis- 
solution was an able statement of his case against the House of 
The King's Commons. In his own mind at least Charles took 
Declaration, ^jg s t an d upon the law. He would carry out, he 
said, the provisions of the Petition of Right. He would allow 
no innovations in the Church. But he protested against the 
new doctrine that the House of Commons might erect itself 
into a supreme tribunal, before which all ministers of State, and 
even all courts of justice, were bound to give account. As to 
tonnage and poundage, it had always been enjoyed by his pre- 
decessors from the first day of their reign. His father had 
collected it for a year before it had been granted by Parliament 
It was clear to him therefore that the Commons had no right 
to construe a formal and friendly act of acknowledgment into 

1 Lords' Journals, iv. 43 ; Contarini to the Doge, March -, Vett. 
Transcripts, R. 0. 

2 Declaration, March IO, Par I. Hist. ii. 492. 


an authority to transfer the whole government of England into 
their hands. 

Of course there was an answer to all this. Formal or not, 
the grant of tonnage and poundage by Parliament signified 
that the government rested upon the co-operation of King and 
Parliament. If it was a new thing for the Commons to claim 
supreme power without the King, it was also a new thing for 
the King to claim supreme power without consulting the wishes 
of the nation. The old order had given way. It was not in 
the nature of things to eliminate the House of Commons from 
the constitution without effecting corresponding changes in 
every direction. A King without a Parliament would be quite 
different from a King with a Parliament. He would glide 
without a check down the easy path which leads through arbi- 
trary power to despotism, and through despotism to anarchy. 
No doubt Charles did not distinctly acknowledge to himself 
that he had resolved never to call a Parliament again ; but he 
had made up his mind to exact conditions which no English 
Parliament would ever again yield. The time had gone by 
when a House of Commons could be content with respectfully 
watching for the word of command from the throne, not because 
the members were more unruly than they had been fifty years 
before, but because the King was utterly careless of the course 
of public opinion. Elizabeth had controlled her Parliaments 
because she embodied that opinion better than they did. 
Charles would, in the end, be controlled by his Parliaments 
because they represented that opinion better than he did. He 
might indeed have found a work to do in guiding that opinion, 
in the hope of preventing it from degenerating into mob- 
government either in Parliament or in the streets. It was his 
misfortune to think it possible to fulfil this duty by placing 
himself in opposition to the current of contemporary sentiment. 
He did not appeal to the nation against the House of Com- 
mons. He bade the nation to keep silence whilst he moulded 
it into the shape which seemed best to himself. 

On the xyth of March a series of questions was put to the 
prisoners. It now appeared that they were not all alike pre^ 
pared to carry their opposition to extremes. Valentine indeed 


firmly refused to answer any charge founded on acts done in 
March 17. Parliament. Coryton was less firm. He acknow- 
of X thT inat ' n tedged that it was ' fit to suffer by paying ' tonnage 
prisoners. and poundage rather 'than to do those things that 
might be worse.' 1 Before long he made his submission, and 
was at once released. Heyman, too, soon afterwards satisfied 
the Court that he might safely be allowed his liberty. 

Selden, who was examined on the following day, had still 

less the temperament of a martyr than Coryton or Heyman. 

Intellectually audacious, he needed the applause of a 

March 18. ' ' 

Examination favouring audience to inspire him to resist authority. 
en> He boldly assured his examiners that he was in ab- 
solute ignorance of all that had passed on the eventful morning. 
He had never moved that Eliot's paper should be read by the 
clerk. He had only made a motion in order to help on the ad- 
'journment of the House in compliance with the King's wishes. 
If he had understood Eliot's speech, 'he would have absolutely 
dissented from him.' The falsehood was so unblushing that it 
can hardly be reckoned as a falsehood at all. He could never 
for an instant have expected to be believed. All he meant was 
to intimate that he had no ir.tention of allowing himself to be 
made a victim for any opinion whatever. 2 He deeply felt his 
separation from his books and his pen, and he was anxious to 
recover the use of them as soon as possible. 3 

If Eliot was weak where Selden was strong, he was strong 

where Selden was weak. He never peered forward into the 

gloom of the future in anxious watching for the new 

and of Eliot. ideas Q{ tolerat j on anc } liberty ; but he was not the 

man to flinch before danger. To every question put he had but 

1 Interrogatories and Examinations, March 17, S. P. Dom. cxxxviii. 
87, 88, 89. 

2 Mr. Forster (Sir J. Eliot, iii. 249) doubts the correctness of these 
answers because ' the alleged result of Selden's examination is not re- 
concilable either with his former speeches or with his tone afterwards.' 
Probably Mr. Forster contented himself with the abstract in Mr. Bruce's 
Calendar. The original examination (S. P. Dom. cxxxiv. 8) is signed by 
Selden, and his signature is attested by the Privy Councillors present. 

1 Selden to Apsley, March 30, S. P. Dom. ccxxxix. 78. 

1 629 ELIOT IN THE TOWER. 8 1 

one reply to give. " I refuse to answer, because I hold that it 
is against the privilege of the House of Parliament to speak of 
anything which was done in the House." 1 

No wonder the whole wrath of Charles was discharged upon 
Eliot To Charles, according to an expression used by his 
Antagonism Attorney-General in a subsequent case, Parliament 
Oiaries 1 was a ' S re3L ^ court, a great council, the great council 
and EHot. o f t ne King ; ' but the Houses were ' but his council, 
not his governors.' 2 Eliot claimed for Parliament an inde- 
pendent position, free except in the specified cases of treason, 
felony, or breach of the peace, from any authority whatever. 
The whole conflict between Crown and Parliament appeared to 
be summed up in this duel between two men, of whom one was 
armed to the teeth, and the other was a defenceless captive at 
his feet. 

To Charles, Eliot was but an ambitious demagogue who 

must be punished in order that the commonwealth might have 

peace. Eliot, he knew, did not stand alone. Men of 

March 20. * 

Eliot visited the highest rank the Earl of Lincoln, Lord Roch- 

ford, Lord St. John, and many others were flocking 

to the Tower to express their sympathy with him in his suf- 

March ferings. 3 A proclamation issued on March 27 bore 

Prociama- the impress of Charles's angry feeling. He spoke of 

tion against .. ., , j j j 

false ru- Eliot as an outlawed man, desperate m mind and 
fortune.' " And whereas," he continued, " for several 
ill ends the calling again of a Parliament is divulged, however 
we have shewed by our frequent meeting with our people our 
love to the use of Parliaments ; yet the late abuse having for 
the present driven us unwillingly out of that course, we shall 
account it presumption for any to prescribe any time unto us 
for Parliaments, the calling, continuing, and dissolving of which 
is always in our own power, and we shall be more inclinable to 
meet in Parliament again when our people shall see more clearly 
into our intents and actions, when such as have bred this inter- 
ruption shall have received their condign punishment, and those 

1 6". P. Dom. cxxxiv. 7. 

2 Heath's speech against Leighton, p. 9, Camden Miscellany, vol. vii. 
1 Apsley to Dorchester, March 20, S. P. Dom, cxxxix. 19. 



who are misled by them and by such ill reports as are raised in 
this occasion, shall come to a better understanding of us and 
themselves." l 

The Proclamation breathed nothing but the fiercest indig- 
nation. Charles had no thought that amongst the wild deeds 
and wilder words of the past session there might be something 
which it would be well for him to lay to heart. There was no 
bending forward to meet his people half-way, no sympathetic 
eye to detect the true causes of their complaints. He alone 
stood upon the rock. He alone could afford to wait. His 
subjects might come to him. He would never go to them. 

It was Charles's fixed determination to inflict severe punish- 
ment upon Eliot. It was the business of the Crown lawyers to 
State of the consider how he was to be reached in accordance 
Treasury. w j t h the forms of the law. In the meanwhile Weston 
was hard put to it to find a remedy for the emptiness of the 
Exchequer. The subsidies voted in the preceding session were 
more than swallowed up by the payment of debts contracted 
during the war. Nor was the war itself at an end. English 
commerce had long been liable to the ravages of Dunkirk 
privateers and of French cruisers. Then had come the strife 

March 7 . about the customs duties. The refusal to allow the 
T oundf e e and l e g a l> tv f tonnage and poundage was now met by 
exacted. a prompt order that all persons declining to pay 
the duties were to be imprisoned until his Majesty should 
direct otherwise, 'or that they be delivered by order of law.' 2 
It was, however, easier to enforce obedience than to bring 
about a revival of trade. Merchants held back from buying 
and selling, and if any goods were brought into the Custom 

March 3 o. House at all, the owners were hooted by the crowd 
iheMer- outside as traitors to their country. 3 A deputation 

chant Adven- . . ., , . , 

turers before from the Merchant Adventurers, the great company 

10 ' which had in its hands the exportation of cloth, was 

summoned before the Council. The merchants who composed 

1 Proclamation, March 27, Rynter, xix. 62 

2 Council Register, March 7. 

1 Contarini to the Doge, March , Ven. Transcripts^ R. O- 


it were asked why exportation had ceased. At first they made 
excuses. They were afraid of pirates. The markets were 
glutted. At last they spoke plainly. They were afraid of the 
Protestation of the House of Commons. Personally, at least, 
they had laid themselves open to a sharp retort. Manchester 
reminded them that they. carried on the most lucrative part of 
their trade, the exportation of undressed and undyed cloths, in 
direct defiance of a parliamentary statute which had been sus- 
pended in their favour by an act of prerogative. In the end 
they were told to summon a full Court of the Company, and to 
submit the King's wishes to its consideration. 

The Court was held, and the merchants were asked whether 
they would ship cloths or not. Not a hand was held up in the 
affirmative. The Council then turned to the Dutch merchants 
settled in London, in the hope that they would be less regardful 
of the resolutions of an English House of Commons. The 
Dutch merchants, however, refused to separate their interests 
from those of their neighbours. " We shall be much degene- 
rate," they replied, "if we go about to betray the liberties of 
the English nation." l In London the resistance was general, 
and nearly the whole trade of the kingdom was concentrated 
in London. So angry was the King at this passive opposition, 
that he thought of dissolving the Merchant Adventurers' 
Company, in order to substitute for it a body composed of 
noblemen and courtiers who would make no difficulty about 
paying the duties. 2 

The King's exchequer did not suffer alone. It was calcu- 
lated that there were in England 200,000 persons depending 
on the cloth trade. 3 The weavers in Essex were 
cloth- SS thrown out of work. The Council interfered to 
workers. mitigate the worst consequences of the stoppage of 
trade. The adjoining parishes were ordered to contribute to 
the relief of the poor in the villages in which distress prevailed. 

1 TamurMSS. Ixxi. fol. I. 

Joachimi to the States-General, April ~ t Add. MSS. 17,677 M. 
fol. 336. 

1 Salvetti's Nnvs-Letter, April . 
r 20 

G 2 


A proclamation was issued forbidding the export of corn, whilst 
at the same time some rioters who had rifled a vessel laden 
with grain at Maldon were put down with a strong hand. But 
the knot of the difficulty was in London, not in Essex, and one 
body of merchants after another was summoned before the 
Council, to be entreated or threatened to take the goods off the 
weavers' hands. 1 

There were indeed some shrewd heads who perceived that 
men who lived by trade would not persist in ruining themselves 
The mer- for the sake of a principle. But such was not the 
ttaretoi* general feeling. " The obstinacy," said a letter-writer 
fuse to trade. o f the day, { * lies not only in the merchant's breast, 
but moves in every small vein through the kingdom." 2 In the 
beginning of May there was a slight improvement. " I have 
ever said," wrote Williams, " that the merchants would be 
weary of this new habit of statesmen they had put on, and turn 
merchants again by that time they heard from their factors 
that their storehouses began to grow empty. God send those 
men more wit who, living in a monarchy, rely upon the de- 
mocracy." 3 

The soreness caused by this prolonged resistance showed 

itself in the punishment inflicted by the Star Chamber upon 

May 6. Chambers. Eight months before, he had told the 

Chambers Council that ' the merchants were in no part of 

in the Star 

Chamber. the world so screwed and wrung as in England, and 
that in Turkey they have more encouragement.' The constitu- 
tion of the Star Chamber had been admirably adapted 

Constitution ,, .. i-i-iji i i 

ofiheStar for the purposes for which it had been used in the 
ber ' days of the Tudor sovereigns. Composed of the 
two Chief Justices and the whole of the Privy Council, it 
brought the highest legal and the highest political capacity to 
bear upon cases in which the offenders were too powerful to be 
reached by the ordinary courts, or in which the evidence was 
too complicated to be unravelled by the skill of an ordinary 

1 Council Register ^ April 18, 29 ; May 12, 22, 23. 

* Notes on Trade, April 6. Lake to Vane, April 20, S. P. Duin. cxl. 
24 ; cxli. 10. 

* Will.ams to Dorchester, May 5, S. P. Dom. cxlii. 19. 


jury. It had thus become a tribunal constantly resorted to as 
a resource against the ignorance or prejudices of a country 
jury, much in the same way as a special jury is applied to in 
our own days. 1 In such investigations it showed itself intel- 
ligent and impartial. In political trials, however, impartiality 
could hardly be expected. Every member of the Court, with 
the exception of the two Chief Justices, was also a Privy 
Councillor. The persons who were cited as defendants had 
invariably given offence to the Privy Council, and the great 
majority of the members of the Court were therefore in 
reality parties to the dispute which they were called upon to 

Before such a court, Chambers had no chance of escape ; 
but there was a difference of opinion as to the extent of the 
_ punishment to be inflicted. The two Chief Justices, 

Sentence r J 

upon Hyde and Richardson, would have been content 

Chambers. ... .. _. . .. 

with a fine of 5oo/. The two bishops, Neile and 
Laud, would not be satisfied with less than 3,ooo/. The fine 
was at last fixed at 2,ooo/., and to this was added the Chief 
Justices alone dissenting imprisonment until the fault com- 
mitted had been duly acknowledged. 

Chambers refused to allow that he had committed any fault 

at all. In vain a form of submission prepared by the Court 

was offered to him for signature. "All the above 

acknowledge contents and submission," he wrote at the foot of it, 

" I, Richard Chambers, do utterly abhor and detest 

as most unjust, and never till death will acknowledge any part 

thereof." Then followed a string of Scripture texts denouncing 

those who refused to execute judgment and justice, and who 

were ready to make a man an offender for a word. 2 

Chambers was not content with the choice of imprisonment 
rather than submission. In order to force on a legal decision 
upon the main point at issue, he brought an action in the 

1 We are so apt to think of the Star Chamber simply as a Court em- 
ployed upon State Trials, that it requires a strong effort of the imagination 
to grasp the fact that the great majority of cases before it were owing to 
the action of private prosecutors. 

2 State Trials^ iii. 374. 


Exchequer for the recovery of his goods against the officers of 
Brings an the customs by whom they had been seized. 1 He 
against the even niade application to the same Court to in- 
Custom validate the Star Chamber decree against himself on 


officers. various grounds, of which the most important was 
that the Court had exceeded the statutory powers conferred 
upon it in the reign of Henry VII. 

Although the question of the legality of the levy of tonnage 

and poundage by prerogative alone was not one to be decided 

June 23. in a hurry, there was time before the Long Vacation 

^ j- e t h t e er to reduce the practical grievance of the merchants to 

goodsofthe ^g lowest possible point. A quantity of their goods 

merchants J * 

restored. sufficient to serve as a security for the ultimate pay- 
ment of the duty was retained in the Custom House by order of 
the Court of Exchequer, while the rest of the property 
25 ' which had been seized was restored to its owners. 2 
The consideration of Chambers's objection to the jurisdiction 
of the Star Chamber was also postponed. It was not likely that 
July 17. the Barons of the Exchequer would seriously enter- 
Question of j a j n j t jj ^ a( j i on g been held by lawyers, as it is 

thejunsdic- J J ' 

tionofthe held by lawyers at this day, that the jurisdiction of 

Star Cham- t. s~ , 

ler. the Star Chamber was extended, not created, by the 

statute of Henry VII. ; but the decision was thrown over to 
Michaelmas Term. 3 

It is impossible to overrate the services rendered to the 

nation by such men as Chambers. No doubt faults had been 

committed on both sides in the political struggle : 

Service . ... . . , 

rendered by but when once the wearer of the crown insisted on 

standing alone without responsibility to anyone, it 

was necessary to raise a protest against a theory of government 

1 There are two actions traceable, Chambers v. Davves &c., and The 
Attorney-General v. Chambers. The answer of Dawes &c. is dated 
May 12, and Chambers's answer is dated June 22. I presume, therefore, 
that Chambers 1 rought his action first. Exchequer Bills ami Answers, 
Charles /., Nos. 264, 236. 

2 The amount demanded from Chambers was 3647. 2s. 2\d. on goods 
valued at 7,282!. os. 8.7. or almost exactly 5 per cent. Exchequer Orders 
and Dccrea, June 23. 3 Stale 7'ria/s, iii. 376. 


which could never be admitted unless Englishmen were to 
degenerate into that servitude into which most of the nations 
of the Continent had sunk, in order to escape from the still more 
terrible evils of aristocratic anarchy. 

At the time Chambers's sturdy resolution appeared to be 
thrown away. It is not, however, by its immediate result that 
such conduct as his can be judged. The habit of firm but 
legal resistance to hardships permitted or supported by the 
opinion of those who hold the reins of government in their 
hands is one of those precious possessions of a race which every 
member of it is bound to defend to the uttermost. Chambers 
had not the tongue or the brain of Selden ; but he knew what 
Selden never learned, that England required those who could 
suffer for her rights, as well as those who could defend them in 

In the main, the position taken by Chambers was the same 
as that taken by Eliot. Eliot, however, was for the present con- 
April, earned not with the general question of parliamentary 
Case of Eliot taxation, but with the special question of the privi- 

and the other i , , 

members of leges necessary to enable the House of Commons to 
BOOS. hold its own against the claim of the Crown to be the 

originator of taxation. It had been possible for the Star Cham- 
ber to make short work with Chambers. It was necessary for 
the Government to make sure of its ground before it could deal 
as it wished with Eliot. 

The first thing to be done was to obtain the opinion of the 
judges. The Petition of Right had strengthened the hands 
Opinion of f tne judges as arbitrators between the King and 
the judges. n j s subjects. It had not converted them into warm 
admirers of the doctrine of the supremacy of Parliament. The 
dismissal of Chief Justice Crew had doubtless not been without 
its effect in lowering the tone of the Bench, and his successor, 
Chief Justice Hyde, had neither energy nor acquirements to 
compensate for the irregularity of his elevation. Richardson, 
Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, had received promotion 
on account of his connexion with Buckingham, whilst Chief 
Baron Walter enjoyed a high reputation as a sound lawyer and 
an honest man. Whether honest or not, the judges were now 


under special temptations to look askance upon the House of 
Commons. In the last session their authority had been called 
in question as much as the authority of the Crown, and the 
ruling of the Barons of Exchequer in the case of customs had 
been treated with special contempt. 

In spite of all this, however, it was not likely that the 
judges would act with precipitation. Their legal training would 
The Chief serve to guard them against that, and there is no 
justices and reason to doubt that they wished to take their position 
Baron con- seriously, and to decide as fairly as they were able to 
do in such a case. It was not without hesitation that 
the two Chief Justices and the Chief Baron answered a series 
of questions propounded to them by Heath. 1 The extent of 
Parliamentary privilege had never been reduced to a fixed rule, 
and there would naturally be a wide difference of opinion on 
the subject between the members of the Privy Council and the 
members of the House of Commons. 

The case put by the Attorney-General was a double one. 

In the first place, he held that in the week of adjournment 

before March 2, there had been a conspiracy to pub- 

The Attor- . . J 

ney-Gene- hsh false statements against Privy Councillors or, in 
plain language, against Weston. In the second place, 
he held that as soon as the King's command to adjourn had 
been delivered by the Speaker, the House had been legally 
adjourned, and that all that had taken place afterwards was of 
the nature of a riot. In this way he did his best to steer clear 
of an examination of the full extent of Parliamentary privilege. 

1 Two sets of questions have been printed, the one in Ruslnvorth, 
\. 662 ; the other in the State Trials, iii. 235, and 238, note. Mr. Forster 
treated them as mere variations, and Mr. Kruce seems to have been of the 
same opinion, as he has calendared th<> MSS. of both forms under the same 
date, April 27. I feel no doubt that they are quite distinct. The form in 
the State Trials which is taken from Nalson is said to contain the answer 
to questions put to ' the three Chief Judges.' From S. P. Dom. cxli. 45, 
we find that the three judges asked that their opinions might not be 
published ' but by consent and conference with the other judges.' Rush- 
worth's form contains answers from all the judges, and is therefore doubt- 
less subsequent to that given in the State Trials. 


He laid his charges at times when the House was either not 
actually sitting or might be held not to be legally sitting. 

From the answers of the judges it is evident that they took 
much the same view of the question as Heath had taken. 
The answers They held that the King's ordinary right of inflicting 
cfthejudges. punishment was limited by the privileges of Parlia- 
ment ; but they did not hold that the House of Commons had 
the right of declaring itself to be possessed of any privileges it 
might think good to claim. It was the business of the judges 
to examine the precedents upon which such claims were based, 
and to hinder encroachments upon the authority of the Crown. 
Hence the answers to the questions put were framed in a spirit 
of true judicial caution. A conspiracy to publish false and 
scandalous rumours against the Privy Council or any of its 
members, ' not to the end to question them in a legal or Parlia- 
mentary way, but to bring them into hatred of the people and 
the Government into contempt,' would be punishable out of 
Parliament ; but it would be necessary to examine the whole 
of the circumstances of the special case before it was possible 
to pronounce what the nature of the offence had been. On the 
second point the judges were of opinion that the power of 
adjournment was in the King's hands, but that it must be exer- 
cised in accordance with the precedents of the House. If, 
however, any should tumultuously oppose it further or otherwise 
than the privileges of the House would warrant, it would be a 
great contempt. 

In later times it has been wisely decided that it is not ex- 
pedient that the judges should act as legal advisers of the Crown. 
The King ^ n Charles's reign they were regarded as the King's 
not satished. counsellors, whose opinions he might obtain in all 
cases of difficulty. The natural impatience of the King to 
obtain an answer in accordance with his wishes was likely to 
come into collision with the natural desire of the judges to 
refrain from giving a decisive opinion on a point which had not 
been fully argued before them. 

Charles was anxious, as he afterwards said, that his judges 
should not answer him in riddles. He sent two further ques- 
tions, the replies to which might save him from the terrible 


disaster of a defeat in open court. He wanted to know at once 
what would be 'the nature of the offence' if a 

He puts two . 

further ques- conspiracy were fully proved. He wanted also to 
know whether any privilege whatever could ' warrant 
a tumultuous proceeding.' 

The three judges were not to be beaten from their position ; 
and they suggested that, before their replies were acted on, it 
would be well that all their brethren should be consulted in a 

The twelve judges were therefore convened on April 25. 
To Heath's questioning they gave much the same answers as 
April 25 28. had been given before by the Chief Justices and the 
^ud'escon- Chief Baron. They were further of opinion that it 
suited. would be proper to proceed in the Star Chamber 
against the prisoners ; but the form of proceeding ought to be 
such as not to deny the incriminated persons the use of 
counsel. Only after a full argument would it be possible to de- 
cide finally what the extent of Parliamentary privilege really was. 

Whilst Heath was making preparations for acting on this 
advice, he was surprised by an unexpected move on the part of 
Ma 6 *ke P r ' soners - Whether their actions in Parliament 
The prison- were punishable or not, it was clear to the seven 
*Halj*L "* prisoners who remained in the Tower after the 
corpus. liberation of Coryton and Heyman that they were 
fairly entitled to bail. Six of the number accordingly Selden, 
Valentine, Holies, Strode, Hobart, 1 and Long applied to the 
Court of King's Bench for a writ of Habeas corpus. Eliot took 
no part in the demand, thinking, perhaps, that the judges would 
be more likely to give fair consideration to the application if 
he were not concerned in it. 

The application was made on May 6, the day on which 

Chambers was being sentenced in the Star Chamber. It was 

May 7. held by the Government that it was not bound by 

The cause of j ne Petition of Right to express the cause of com- 


expressed, mittal till a Habeas corpus had been actually de- 
manded, and the original warrant had therefore given no reason 

1 Hobart's name is omitted in the usual accounts of the matter. Lut 
the Rule Book of the King's Bench shows that he joined the others. 


for the imprisonment beyond the King's pleasure. A fresh 
warrant was now issued, stating the ground of committal to he 
notable contempts against the King and his Government, and 
stirring up of sedition in the State. The next step to be taken 
by the prisoners' counsel would be to convince the judges that 
the offence so named was a bailable one. 

The cause expressed was somewhat vaguely given. All 
reference to the existence of such a body as Parliament was 
Heath's in- carefully avoided. In the information exhibited by 
tKi n ia Heath in the Star Chamber on the same day, it was 
Chamber. impossible to avoid all mention of Parliament. But 
as little was said about it as possible. Heath took his stand 
upon the conspiracy to publish slanderous rumours, in order 
to bring the Government into disrepute. He now waived the 
question of the King's right to enforce an adjournment which 
he had mooted in his private application to the judges, and he 
contrived to represent the tumult as an offence against the 
House as well as against the King, by alleging that, but for 
the machinations of the prisoners, the majority of the Commons 
would have been ready to adjourn. 

It was possible that when Heath came to argue his case he 
would find that he had only escaped one difficulty to land 
himself in another. He would first have to prove that the 
conspiracy had a real existence. He would then have to prove 
the falsehood of Eliot's deliberate statement that whatever he 
had said against Weston had been said with a view to a formal 
impeachment. The defendants, however, saved him the trouble 
of marshalling his evidence. They repudiated the 
The defen- jurisdiction of the Star Chamber entirely. Of the 
nur " pleas put in, Selden's was the longest and most com- 
prehensive. 1 The great lawyer was himself again. It was one 
thing to be brought face to face with Privy Councillors in a cell 
in the Tower. It was another thing to plead in due professional 
form. Going to the heart of the question, he asserted boldly, 
what Heath had abstained from denying, that the Royal com- 
mand did not adjourn the House, and that all that had been 

1 farl. Hist. ii. 507 ; S. P. Dom. cxliii. 4-13. 


done till the doors were thrown open, must therefore be con- 
sidered as having been done in full Parliamentary session, and 
as being covered by privilege of Parliament. 

There was no avoiding any more the question whether the 

proceedings in the Star Chamber were barred by Parliamentary 

Ma 2 privilege. It was referred to the two Chief Justices 

The point and the Chief Baron for their opinion. The point of 

fei?ed to the law was argued in their presence ; but they could 

not bring themselves to take upon their shoulders 

the responsibility of giving a hasty decision. When June 6 

Tune e arrived, the day on which their answer was expected, 

Further they asked for further delay. They said that they 

had still many precedents to consult. 1 

The King was too impatient to be satisfied. He sent for 

all the judges, and asked them one by one what their opinion 

June 9. was. The answer made has not been preserved, but 

The judges j t seems that seven out of the twelve replied in a 

before the 

King. wav which did not respond to the hopes and wishes 

of the King. 2 

Whilst the judges had been taking time to consider whether 

the general case came under the jurisdiction of the Star 

Chamber or not, the Court of King's Bench had 

June 5. B 

i.ytteiton been listening to arguments on the prisoners' demand 
ban for the for bail. On the 5th, Lyttelton urged on behalf of 
prisoners. ^ p r j[ sonerS) that the sedition and contempt of 
which they were charged did not constitute treason, and that 

1 Heath to Convvay, June 4, S. P. Dom. cxliv. 37. Gresley to Picker- 
ing, June 10, Court and 7"imes, ii. 17. I have no doubt that the arguments 
meniioned in the former letter were delivered before the judges. Mr. 
Forstcr speaks of them as arguments in the Star Chamber. It does not 
seem that the case was ever argued in the Star Chamber at all. The 
judges had to consider whether the prisoners could be made to answer in 
that Court, ' off de gevangen parlementslieden gehouden syn te rechte te 
staen in de Sterre Chamber.' Joachimi to the States-General, Add. MSS. 
1 7, 67 7 M. fol. 358 b. 

2 Gresley to Pickering, June 10, Court and Times, ii. 19. Life of 
D^Ewes, i. 414. The only names of the seven which have reached us are 
those of Denham, Yelverton, and Hutton. 


there was therefore nothing to interfere with the taking of bail 
in the ordinary course. 1 

The heads of Lyttelton's argument had been furnished by 
Selden. It seems to have made great impression upon the 
Attorney-General, as he asked for time to consider his reply. 
June 9 . As he was not ready on the gih, Selden demanded 
nfa'nds'ud" - an immediate decision. "Will you bail a seditious 
ment. priest," said Strode, with bitter reference to the affair 

of the Clerkenwell Jesuits, " though not seditious Parliament- 
men, as we be charged to be ? " 

On the r 3th Heath at last replied. He began by casting a 

slur upon the Petition of Right. The first return, he said, 

would in former times have been held sufficient 

June 13. 

Heaths 'when due respect and reverence were given to 
Government.' But though Heath had no praise to 
bestow on the Petition, he was quite right in arguing that its 
conditions had been satisfied. A cause had been specified for 
the information of the judges. It was for them to decide 
whether the offence were bailable or not. The petition was 
silent as to the nature of a bailable offence, and the judges 
would therefore have to decide the point by the law as it had 
stood before. Heath then proceeded to argue that the judges 
had often refused bail to prisoners committed by the King, 
and that, at all events, they might exercise their discretion, 
and refuse bail to persons who were likely to do harm by 
spreading the contagion of sedition in the country. If they 
doubted whether the release of any particular prisoners would 
be dangerous or not, they ought to consult the King. 

The old difficulty which had occupied so large a space in 
the debates of the previous year cropped up once more in 
where is dis- an unexpected manner. Somewhere or another there 
C o e werTo 5 be must ex ' st m every State a discretionary power to 
placed? modify and even to overrule the precepts of positive 
law. Parliament in 1628 had snatched that power from the 
King. Heath now offered it to the judges on condition that 
they would exercise it in the maintenance of the King's autho- 
rity. The judicial instinct of the judges repelled the dangerous 
1 State Trials, iii. 241, 252. 


gift It was the function of their office simply to declare the 
law. When Lyttelton asked them to bail the prisoners because 
the particular offence laid to their charge was legally bailable, 
he spoke in language which they could understand. When 
Heath asked them to retain the prisoners in custody because 
it was inexpedient to set them free, he spoke in language which 
would be comprehensible in a political assembly, but which was 
out of place when addressed to a court of law. 

The judges felt themselves to be in a great strait. They 

did not believe that they would be doing right in refusing bail, 

but they did not wish to fly in the King's face. They 

The judges- ' ,,. . f . - . . . . 

write to the wrote to the King, therefore, informing him that they 
were bound by their oaths to admit the prisoners to 
bail, and suggesting to him that he might have the credit of 
the act by sending them directions to do so. In reply they 
Charles received a summons to Greenwich, where they were 
seeks delay. warne( i no t to decide on so vital a point without 
consulting the judges of the other courts. The other judges 
naturally refused to give an opinion on a question which had 
not been argued before them, and as time was slipping away, it 
was possible that the Long Vacation might come before any 
judicial decision had been openly pronounced. 1 

Charles had evidently made up his mind that if it .came to 

the worst, he would not allow the scruples of the judges to 

stand in his way. Yet it was not in his nature to look 

the letter of fairly in the face the obstacle which had risen in his 

path. He did not wish openly to trample upon the 

guardians of the law. He did not wish to fall back upon State 

expediency as upon something far higher than legal precedent. 

He was anxious if possible to act through the judges, and 

would wrap himself proudly in the consciousness that the voice 

of the judges was the voice of the law itself. 

June 22. His first step was to assure himself of the safe 

ba^aixi custody of three of the prisoners who had not been 
Strode re- originally committed to the Tower. Long, Hobart, 

moved to the J 

Tower. and Strode were removed to the strong fortress, 
within the walls of which the King could count on the fidelity 

1 Whitelocke's Memorials, 14. 


of the keeper, Sir Allen Apsley. There they were to remain 
' until they were delivered by due course of law.'* 

By due course of law Long, Hobart, and Strode would 

June 23. have appeared in court on the following day to 

They do not receive an answer to their application for bail. When 

appear in 

court. the time came for their appearance, the Court was 

informed by the keeper of the prison from which they had 
been taken, that it was no longer in his power to produce 

There have been judges in England who would have been 
roused to indignation by the slight cast upon their office ; but 
Hyde was not a Coke, and the Court contented itself with 
the assertion that the prisoners being absent, they could not be 
bailed, delivered, or remanded. 

Charles felt that some justification was necessary. In an 
obscure and incoherent letter, which painfully betrayed the un- 
certainty of his mind, he explained to the judges of 
The King's the King's Bench that he had kept back the prisoners 
letter ' because they had behaved insolently on a former 

occasion. Further, as no decision had yet been come to on 
the legality of the Star Chamber proceedings, he did not think 
the presence of the prisoners was necessary. Nevertheless, to 
show his respect to the Court, he would allow Selden and 
Valentine to attend them on the following day. 2 

Scarcely had this strange letter been despatched when 
Charles was warned by Heath that the Court was not likely to 
take the hint which it was intended to convey. If 
ersnot r tobe Selden and Valentine appeared in court, wrote the 
produced. Attorney-General, they would assuredly be bailed. 
Apsley must therefore be distinctly ordered not to produce 
them. Charles at once gave the order suggested, and wrote a 
second letter to the judges, telling them that he had changed 
his mind. None of the prisoners should be produced till 
he had reason to believe that they would make a better 

1 Ccntrolment Roll, Kin^s Bench, 5 Charles I. Membr. 65. 
: The King to the Judges of the King's Bench, June 24, Rushworth, 
i. 680. 


demonstration of their modesty and civility than on the last 
occasion. 1 

When the Court met on the following day no prisoners 
appeared. The judges accepted the check without remon- 
strance. On the 2 6th the term came to an end, and 
NO bail the Court contented itself with directing that the 
prisoners should be produced after the Long Vaca- 
26. r jrjj ot ' s name i s found O n the list of 

applicants for bail. It would seem that though he had taken 
no steps to share in his comrades' chances of freedom, he was 
ready to share in their misfortune, now that there was no longer 
any risk of compromising them by his presence. 2 

Charles had been scrupulous to observe the Petition of 
Right in the letter, but he had not observed its spirit. He had 
sought to entrust the arbitration between himself and 
con a dut S t S to his subjects to the judges, and on the first occasion 
he judges. ^^ t ^ e j u( jg es d ec kl e cl against him, he set aside 
their decision by a subterfuge. Perhaps it was inevitable that 
he should refuse to submit. A modern Parliament under 
similar circumstances would have overruled the judges by 
suspending the Habeas Corpus Act. It is a clear gain to the 
working of the constitution that overwhelming power should be 
placed in a political not in a judicial body. It is also a clear 
gain that it should be placed in a body which is likely to 
exercise it as seldom as possible. Charles was neither in the 
position of an absolute king nor of an absolute Parliament. 
The traditions of the constitution forbade him from claiming 
to be the source of law. Yet the traditions of the constitution 
justified him in claiming the supreme regulative power in the 
nation. True to his nature, he concealed from himself the 
real meaning of his act by the trick in which it was enveloped. 
His own position was weakened by the manoeuvre. He had 
humiliated the judges, and if he humiliated the judges his 
subjects were not likely to respect them. He could no longer 

1 Heath to Dorchester : the King to Apsley ; the King to the Judges 
of the King's Bench, S. P. Dom. cxlv. 40, 41, 42. 

2 Rule Book of the Kings Bench 


look to them to break the collision between himself and his 
Parliament, if ever a Parliament should meet again. 

The arrival of the Long Vacation left every constitutional 
question unsettled. In Charles's relations with foreign Powers 
equal uncertainty prevailed. Common sense, it 
foreign* might be thought, would have convinced him that 
policy. ^\ s on i v chance of success at home lay in complete 
abstention from entanglements with foreign states. It was 
impossible for him to lay down the law on the Rhine or 
the Danube without the support of a united nation. It 
was equally impossible for him to lay down the law at West- 
minster if he was engaged in war or in the preparations for war. 
Wes'ton saw all this clearly. Charles did not see it at all. He' 
fancied that because he was able to send Eliot to the Tower 
his word would be equally powerful at Paris or Madrid. He 
did not even perceive the necessity of interesting himself in 
:he objects for which the nations of the Continent were striving, 
and of waiting patiently till his own special grain could be 
garnered in the general harvest. To recover the Palatinate 
was the one object \vhich he had set before him, and it was a 
matter of indifference to him whether he recovered it by the 
aid of France or Spain, of Protestant or Catholic. He was 
treating more or less openly with Richelieu, with Olivares. w r ith 
Christian IV., and with Gustavus Adolphus at one and the 
same time. Was it to be wondered at if he failed to secure 
the confidence of any one of them ? 

The spring of 1629 was a time of crisis in Germany. In 
the preceding summer Wallenstein had been beaten back from 
German tne waus of Stralsund. The assistance given to the 
affairs. citizens by Sweden and Denmark had enabled them 
to resist the master of the most numerous and well-appointed 
army which had been seen on the Continent since the days of 
the Romans. The King of Sweden and the King of Denmark 
drew near to one another in spite of ancient rivalry and per- 
sonal jealousy. Yet, though Wallenstein had failed at Stralsund, 
his power still seemed irresistible. Krempe had fallen, and 
Gliickstadt was menaced ; and if Gliickstadt and Stralsund 
were overcome, Germany would be at the feet of the Emperor. 



Ships would be built and equipped, and neither Copenhagen 
nor Stockholm would be safe. 

Then it was that the Emperor and the Catholic Electors 

committed a fault as portentous in its consequences as the 

,. , Revocation of the Edict of Nantes was to be in 

March 19. 

The Edict of future years. The Edict of Restitution, signed nine 
timtion. days aftej . the dissolution of the English Parliament, 

swept into the hands of the Catholic clergy the bishoprics and 
abbeys of Northern Germany which had long been in posses- 
sion of Protestant laymen. The Protestant populations of these 
ecclesiastical lands knew that their religion was at stake. The 
Protestant princes around knew that the provision which they 
had been accustomed to find in these lands for their younger 
sons was snatched away from them, and that each one of the 
lost territories would be turned into a garrison held against 
them in the interests of the Emperor and his Church. 

It might be a question whether Charles was able to inter- 
fere at all with profit on the Continent. But there 

Charles's ne- ij r .> / i r 

gotiations could be no question tnat, if he was to interfere at 
*nd h Den e - den a ^> ^ was on ty by a close alliance with the German 
mark> princes that he could hope to gain his ends. 

Such a policy had a warm supporter in Sir Thomas Roe. 
As ambassador at Constantinople, he had been the constant 
January, correspondent of the exiled Elizabeth, had been 
sir Thomas made the confidant of all her hopes and schemes, 
posai. and had done his best to carry them out so far as 

his influence allowed him. " Honest Tom," as she playfully 
called him, after consulting the Prince of Orange on the way, 
had returned to England in January, with little understanding 
of the political strife which had arisen during his long absence 
from home, but with an overflowing knowledge of Continental 
politics and a clear belief that England's true place was on 
the side of the Protestants of the world. At that time a good 
understanding between the King and the House of Commons 
was looked forward to at Court, and Roe had no difficulty in 
persuading the Privy Council to listen with ap- 
proval to his urgent entreaty that forty ships and 
6,000 men should be sent to the aid of the King of Denmark 

1629 THE WAR IN ITALY. 99 

before March was over. 1 As, however, nothing could be 
finally settled till the result of the session was known, Roe was 
allowed to visit the Hague once more, to concert measures with 
his friends in Holland. 

In the beginning of March Roe was once more in England. 
, f , He found there Sir Tames Spens, the Scotchman 

March. J 

Spens in who had been so often employed as a negotiator by 
ngan ' Gustavus, and who had come to urge upon Charles 

the necessity of taking an active part in the war. He found, 
March 9 . too, Parliament on the eve of dissolution. Charles 

Charles professed himself as ready as ever to help the King 

recommends * i - 

patience. of Denmark. But at present he had not the means 
to do it. His uncle must have a little patience till he could 
put his affairs in order. 2 

Gustavus's plan was his old one of a Protestant alliance to 

hold head against the Emperor in Germany, whilst France 

January, undertook the conflict against Spain in Italy. Events 

French in- appeared to be propitious to the execution of his 

tervention in 

Italy. scheme. A disputed succession m the Duchies of 

Mantua and Montferrat had brought Spain and France into 
collision beyond the Alps without an actual declaration of war. 
Casale was besieged by a Spanish army in the name of the 
claimant who was favoured by Spain and the Emperor. In the 
name of the Duke of Nevers, the claimant favoured by France, 
Richelieu, carrying Louis with him, scaled the Alps in the 
depth of winter, compelled the Duke of Savoy to separate 
himself from Spain, and to place Susa in French hands as a 
pledge of his submissiveness. The siege of Casale was raised. 
A limit was placed to Spanish predominance in Italy, 
March 5 . as a jj m j t ^ad \)Q en placed to Wallenstein's predomi- 
nance in Germany by the failure of the siege of Stralsund. In 
Italy, as in Germany, a centre of resistance was formed to a 
hard uncongenial domination. The ambassadors of the Italian 

1 Contarini to the Doge, Feb. ^, Ven. Transcripts, R. 0. When pub- 
lishing Sir Thomas Roe's Mission for the Camden Society {Miscellany ; vii.), 
I was not aware of this first visit to England. 

2 Dorchester to Anstruther, March 9, S. P. Denmark. 

H 2 


princes flocked to the camp of Louis, proffering their friendship 
and their services. 

At Susa, the scene of Richelieu's triumph, the treaty was. 
signed which put an end to the war between France and Eng- 

ril z land. The principle that each Sovereign was to be 
Peace free to settle his relations with his own subjects as 

France n and he thought fit was tacitly accepted. Louis put in no 
England. dajm for the to i erat i on o f t h e English Catholics. 

Charles put in no claim for the better treatment of the French 
Huguenots. When Louis learned from his sister that she was 
perfectly satisfied with her present household, it was impossible 
for him to press for the return of her French attendants. 

The removal of the difficulties which stood in the way of 
the treaty was publicly and deservedly ascribed to the efforts 
of the Venetian ambassador Contarini. As might have been 
expected, he had relied much on the influence of the Queen. 
At a moment when she was looking forward to becoming a 
mother for the first time, it would have been hard for the 
Publication husband to resist the entreaties of his wife. The 
of the Peace. p eace was published in London on May 10. Hen- 
rietta Maria, proud of her work, came up from Greenwich to 
take part in the Te Deum which was to be sung at the Chapel 
at Somerset House in celebration of an event which gave her 
such peculiar reasons for rejoicing. The fatigue of the journey 
was too great for her, and soon after her return she was 
frightened by two dogs quarrelling in her presence^ 
Miscarriage On the morning of the T3th she gave birth prema- 
oftheQueen. ture | y to an j n f ant w hich lived only for two hours. 
For some time she was herself in great peril. The King was 
constantly at her bedside, waiting upon her with the tenderest 
affection during the time of her trial. If God pleased, he said 
to the physicians, he might have other children. But let them 
do all they could to save his wife. 1 

Henrietta Maria looked upon the treaty of Susa merely 
as a reconciliation between her husband and her brother. 

1 Salvetti's News-Letter, May ; Contarini to ZorzS, May - 3 , Vtn. 
Transctipts, K. O. 


ConUrini regarded it as the first step to an alliance against 
February. Spain. Charles was, however, still hankering after the 
Ends vane promises which Spain was always ready to dispense, 
to Holland. j n February he had sent Sir Henry Vane to the 
Hague to ask the Prince of Orange and the States what they 
thought of the Spanish offers of peace. As might have been ex- 
pected, they did not even think them worth listening 
to. They knew well that Spain was crippled by the loss 
of the treasure fleet, and that a portion of her forces would be 
diverted to the defence of Italy. Vane was accordingly sent 
back with an admonition to Charles to take part in the vigorous 
prosecution of the war. 

How could Charles prosecute the war vigorously? The 
despatch urging the King of Denmark to patience was already 
Between'' " on ' ts wav< Negotiations had long ago been com- 
Uenmark menced at Liibeck between Christian and the Em 

and the . 

Emperor. peror. Yet Christian had assured Charles's ambassa- 
dor Anstruther that, if he could be certain of aid from England, 
he would continue the war. On May 2 he learned 
that he was to be fed by hopes, and he knew too 
well from the sad experience of Lutter that it was useless tc. 
depend on promises which Charles had not the means of ful- 
filling. He angrily told Anstruther that he ' wished of God he 
had known sooner what he might have expected.' ' Ten days 
afterwards a treaty was signed at Liibeck. Christian 

May 12. * 

The Peace received back his hereditary dominions, and aban- 
doned the championship of German Protestantism. 
A small fleet which was being leisurely fitted out in the English 
ports was equipped too late to be of any avail. 

The news which reached Charles from France seemed 
to be almost as bad as the news which reached him from 
_ . Denmark. Richelieu was the last man in the world 
rebellion in to throw himself into a policy of adventure. He 
contented himself with the success which he had 
acquired at Casale, and returned to France to complete the 
subjugation of the Huguenots. Rohan and the Protestants of 

1 Anstruther to Dorchester, June 6, S. P. Denmark, 


Languedoc and the Cevennes were still in arms in the South 
The King in person, with the Cardinal by his side, marched 
against the insurgents. On May 28 Privas was taken and treated 
with the utmost barbarity by the triumphant soldiery. Charles 
may well be excused if he suspected Richelieu of having taken 
advantage of his credulity to impose a religious tyranny upon 
the French Protestants. " I have made peace with France," 
he said to Contarini, " for the advantage of Christendom and 
to carry out my original designs for the public good." He 
added that he could not tell what the French were aiming at. 
The other day a French gentleman had repeated in his presence 
a list of the Huguenot towns which his master was assailing. 
" In short," said Charles, "he seemed to be telling me the best 
news in the world. I thought at first that he was joking, but 
when I found that he was serious, I listened with great patience 
without answering a word." 

Of all this the Spaniards were not slow to take advantage. 

Coloma had written from Flanders to his old friend Weston, 

holding out vague hopes of the restitution of the 

Coloma s .. TT i i r -r. i 

letters to Palatinate. He obtained permission for Rubens to 
visit England on an unavowed mission. No diplo- 
matist could have been personally more welcome to Charles, 
who was never so happy as when he was arranging his pictures 
or discussing their beauties. Rubens had many illusions to 
disperse. He acknowledged that it would not be so 

May 27. , . . . 

Rubens m easy to restore the Palatinate as Charles seemed to 

think. Only part of it was held by Spanish garrisons, 

and if those garrisons were removed, their place would be at 

once occupied by the troops of the Emperor and the League. 1 

The statement made by Rubens was not the less disagreeable 

Charles because it was true, and Charles, doubting whether 

tavus r ar!d US " ^ e ^ a< ^ anything to hope from France or Spain, turned 

the Dutch, once more an open ear to those who were urging 

him to a strictly Protestant alliance. Gustavus was allowed to 

1 Contarini to the Doge, May ^ s> ^ '?, June _, Vcn. Transcripts, 

O. Weston to d 

' r ..j May 20 
hews- Letter, -,*?. 
' June 8 

K. O. Weston to Goloma, |^? 4 ,, Simancas MSS. 2519. Salvetti'a 

ftlarch o J ' 


levy one regiment in England and another in Scotland. 1 The 
Dutch were permitted to take into their service soldiers for 
whom Charles had himself no further use. 2 He sent Roe on a 
June 20. diplomatic mission to the Baltic. It is true that he 
rion'tothe bound himself to nothing by it. The ambassador was 
Baltic. to mediate a peace between Sweden and Poland, 
which would set Gustavus free to carry out in Germany the 
great enterprise which he was already meditating ; but he 
carried with him no engagement from Charles to provide either 
men or money. 

Before Roe left England he obtained a promise from Charles 
that he would come to no agreement with Spain without the 

consent of his friends and allies. 3 Charles, in fact, 
Rubens' had taken fresh offence at the declaration of Rubens, 

that he had no authority to surrender any part of the 
Palatinate. Rubens had afterwards disgusted him by proposing 
a mutual cessation of arms between England and Spain, whilst 
each state was left free to assist its allies upon the Continent. 
The Prince of Orange was at that time besieging the fortress 
of Hertogenbosch, one of the bulwarks of the Spanish Nether- 
lands. Charles, in the presence of Rubens, expressed a hope 
that the siege might be successful. " Why," said the painter, 
" should your Majesty wish the triumph of my master's rebels ? " 
"I found them," replied the King, "a free State. I do not 
know them as rebels. They are my friends, and I wish them 
to gain the victory, in order that your master may become more 
moderate." 4 Rubens was told that Cottington would be sent 
as ambassador to treat for peace at Madrid, but that the in- 
tention of the King of Spain to surrender the fortresses held by 
him in the Palatinate must first be distinctly declared. 5 

1 Salvetti to Sacchetti, ,^^> 

* Joachimi to the States-General, June ^ j^"y^ Add. MSS. 17,67? 

fol. 357, 362. 

3 Contarini to the Ambassadors in France, June ? Ven. Transcrifts^ 

K. 0. 

. T 8, ii, June 26 ... 

Contarini to Zorzi, June l8> 2I> July < , *<* 

* Rubens to O'.ivares, , Simancas MSS. 2519. 


Whilst Charles was in this' mood the Marquis of Chateau. 

neuf, the new French ambassador, arrived in England. He 

was able to announce that the Huguenots in the 

Jum 28. 

Pacification South of France had submitted to the King. No 
resistance to the Royal authority would be allowed ; 
but toleration was to be the maxim of the State. Catholic and 
Protestant were to have nothing to fear from one another, that 
they might devote their energies to the defence, it might be to 
the aggrandisement, of their common country. 

Chateauneuf was empowered to invite Charles to active co- 
operation against Spain. He soon discovered that nothing of 
the kind was to be expected. " I have orders." he 

June 28. 

cnateauneuf said to Contarini, "to offer to England carte blanche 
for all that they wish to have done in Germany ; but I 
find them so weak that I do not see how, as things stand, any- 
thing of importance can be done." l 

The very urgency of the French ambassador must have 
startled Charles, and he was still more disgusted when Cha- 
teauneuf, at Holland's instigation, recommended 
Charlestons him to call a Parliament, in order that he might 
pam< declare war with some prospect of success. Spain, 
at any rate, did not ask him to join in a war or to summon 
a Parliament. Once more he turned to Rubens. " In Sep- 
tember or October," he said to the Queen, "you will see a 
Spanish ambassador here." 2 Weston plied him, as ever, with 
the argument that unless he made peace he must summon 
a Parliament again. At last Charles took the step which he 
had long hesitated to take. On July 12 Rubens was able 
to forward the English demands in writing. Charles recog- 
nised the necessity of consulting others besides the King of 
Spain about the Palatinate. He would be content, he said, 
if Rubens would promise to do all good offices in his power 
with the Emperor and the Duke of Bavaria, and he hoped 
that those potentates would send ambassadors to Madrid to 

1 Despatch of Contarini and Soranzo, July 3 f y ettf Transcripts t R. O 
Chateauneuf's Instructions, May ^, Aff. Etrangeres, xliii. 139. 
* Rubens to Olivares, July ^, Simancas MSS. 2519. 


treat conjointly with his own. Yet he must have something 
more than a mere negotiation -on which to depend. Philip 
must distinctly declare that, whatever happened, he would 
deliver up the fortresses which he himself held in the Palati- 
nate. 1 Cottington, w'ho had lately been appointed Chancellor 
of the Exchequer, was accordingly named ambassa- 
Resoivesto dor to the King of Spain. On July 19 Charles an- 
tfn n gtonu> nounced his intention to the Council. He invited 
Madrid. no O p} n j onj an( j his tone was such that no one ven- 
tured to object. 

The immediate cause of the resolution thus taken was a 
fresh letter from Coloma to Weston. It was now arranged that 
Coloma should come to England as Philip's ambassador ; but 
the real business of the negotiation was to be left to Cottington 
at Madrid. 

Chateauneuf saw clearly that his real antagonist was Weston. 
The Lord Treasurer was as unpopular at Court as he was in 

j u iy. the country. The close-fisted guardian of the Ex- 
Mtegon'fsts chequer kept a tight hold upon pensions, and pleaded 
at Court j n surly tones the emptiness of the Treasury to those 
who had incurred debts in the service of the King. Many a 
courtier cried out for a Parliament, that he might dip his hand 
in the stream of subsidies. 2 Rubens, himself no ascetic, was 
astonished at the vast expenditure of the Court. Carlisle and 
Holland distinguished themselves by the splendour of their 
hospitality. Not a few of the lords in attendance upon the 
King followed their example with very insufficient revenues. 
The necessary result followed. ' Therefore," wrote the artist, 
" public and private affairs are to be sold here for ready 
money." 3 All this craving discontent Chateauneuf hoped to 
mould to his uses by making the Queen the centre of an orga- 
nisation which would receive the word of command from the 

1 Paper given to Rubens by Weston, enclosed in a letter from Rubens 
to Olivares, July, Simancas MSS. 2519. 

"- Chateauneuf to Richelieu, ^~j> A ff- Etrangires, xliii, 204. 

1 Rubens to Olivares, July --, Simancas MSS. 2519. 


Everything the ambassador saw led him to believe that with 
the Queen on his side he could hardly fail of success. Charles 
was still an ardent lover. He kissed his wife again and again 
Relations m Chatcauneufs presence. " You do not see that 
CharteTand at Turin," he said gaily, referring to the Queen's 
the Queen, eldest sister. " Nor at Paris either," he added in a 
lower tone, with a glance at the loveless wedlock of Louis. 
Some councillors complained that the King was always in his 
wife's apartments. Except when he was hunting it was im- 
possible to speak to him. Yet he was excessively jealous of 
the supposition that he was under the Queen's influence. " I 
wish," he said to her one day, " that we could be always to- 
gether, and that you could accompany me to the Council ; but 
what would these people say if a woman were to busy herself 
with matters of government?" Chateauneuf thought that if 
the Queen would play her cards well she might lead her hus- 
band where she chose ; but he could not persuade her to care 
for politics at all. She was too happy in the immediate present, 
too little capable at any time of a sustained effort, except when 
some personal object was at stake, to trouble herself with the 
combinations of statesmen. 1 

Chateauneuf now tried to reach the Queen through her 
religious zeal. He proposed to establish in her household 
The Queen's e ig nt French Capuchins and a bishop, and to get rid 
priests. o f j^g two Qratorians who had been in attendance 
since the expulsion of the French, one of whom, Father Philips, 
an Englishman, had acted as the Queen's confessor. Chateau- 
neuf found the King ready to give his wife all freedom in the 
exercise of her religion. He sometimes scolded her for staying 
in bed so long that she was unable to hear mass before noon. 
To the eight Capuchins he made no objection ; but he would 
not hear of the bishop. He would come to England, he said, 
in his episcopal habit, and would jostle with the bishops of the 
land. To the Queen he expressed his own personal objection. 
" Your mother," he said, " is sending you a governor. When 

1 Chateauneuf to Richelieu, July g, Aug. g| ^* **, A/. trantfres, 
liii. 195. 217, 249. 


he comes do not let him enter your room as you allowed the 
Bishop of Mende to do. Let him approach you only at church 
and at dinner." The King of France, he told Chateauneuf, 
wanted to have two ambassadors in London, one for himself 
and another for the Queen. 

If the King would not admit a bishop, the Queen would not 
part with her confessor. Chateauneuf was forced to give way to her 
strongly expressed wishes, and to renounce for the present the 
hope of establishing the Capuchins in England, at least till the 
two kings could come to terms on the subject of the bishop. 1 

The ambassador had therefore to engage the Queen against 

Weston in some other way. The sore point was at last found. 

Henrietta Maria was profuse in her expenditure. 

need of "She is a bad housekeeper," said Charles of her in 

her presence. Weston, who found it hard enough 

to get money for any purpose, was driven to despair by the 

urgent need of satisfying the Queen's demands. Chateauneuf 

openly did his best to effect a reconciliation, but the quarrel 

served his purpose too well to be in reality disagreeable to him. 51 

By this time Charles was looking for an answer from Spain 
to his demand about the fortresses of the Palatinate. He 
September, waited in vain. He was told that when Cottington 
ne^otiadon arr i ye d 'it Madrid the English propositions would 
with Spain. f orm a fitting subject of negotiation. They could 
not be discussed in England as a preliminary to his mission. 
Olivares, in fact, declined to bind his hands beforehand. 
Charles struggled hard against this conclusion. He pleaded 
with Rubens that the places held by the Spaniards were cf little 
importance to them, whilst his own reputation was deeply con- 
cerned in their recovery. Olivares, however, maintained an 
imperturbable silence, and Charles gave way. Cottington was 
to go to Madrid without any previous declaration from Philip. 
If he did not receive a satisfactory answer about the fortresses, 

1 Chateauneuf's despatches are full of his negotiations on this subject 
from his arrival till his departure. 

2 Chateauneuf to Richelieu, July *-, Aff. Elrangtres, xliii. 125. 

Soranzo's Despatch, July ^, Ven. MSS. 


he was to come away at once, and Charles was to be free to 
accept the overtures of France. 

In Cottington Rubens had found an instrument ready to 
his hand. His good faith, he assured Olivares, could not be 
greater if he had been a Spanish Councillor of State. The 
minister of the King of England now joined the Fleming in 
urging Charles to offer a higher price for the Palatinate than a 
mere treaty of peace. Why should not England request the 
Dutch to come to terms with Spain by threatening to abandon 
them entirely to themselves, or even to take part against them 
if they persisted in carrying on the war ? Charles gave way at 
last so far as to consent that when Cottington left for Madrid 
Sir Henry Vane should be sent back to the Hague in order to 
induce the States-General to accept his arbitration. 1 Roe's 
negotiation, of which so much had been thought a few months 
before, was now entirely neglected, and Charles even left his 
ambassador to wander amongst the Baltic States without a 
single despatch to acquaint him of 'the turn which affairs were 
taking in England. 

Though the treaty with France had done something to 
revive English trade, the old difficulties were not at an end. 
Continued To some extent, indeed, the prediction of those who 
Ihe'payment na( ^ declared it impossible for the merchants long 
of Customs. f O desist from buying and selling had been realised. 
Many of them were now again passing goods through the 
Custom House ; but there were many who were still obstinate, 
1 because,' as the new Venetian ambassador, Soranzo, expressed 
it, ' they believe in their conscience that they will commit the 
greatest sin in surrendering their liberties.' The political 
struggle was carried on with all the instinctive resolution of a 
The star war of religion, 
chamber f he Government wisely resolved to leave the 

prosecution _ J 

of members merchants to time and to the allurements of gain. 

<-f Parliament . r _ ,. 

dropped. The prosecution of the members of Parliament could 
not be so lightly abandoned. The Star Chamber process was, 

1 Rubens to Olivares, -^"^ **, Sept. jj, Simancas MSS. 2519. In- 
structions to Vane, Oct. 18, S. P. Holland. 


however, dropped, in compliance with the wishes of the judges. 
The great cause was to be removed to the King's Bench. 

The scandal of calling the offending members before a 
Court mainly composed of Privy Councillors was thus avoided. 
Charles would appeal to the ordinary guardians of the law to 
punish his assailants. 

He had not much cause to fear. The judges were ready 

enough to carry out his wishes. The course to be pursued in 

s the question of bail was settled at a conference 

Difficulties between Coventry, Manchester, and Dorchester with 

the assistance of Heath. The first day of term on 
which the prisoners would be brought up in pursuance of the 
rule of the Court was October 9. It was now resolved to 
anticipate the day, to bring them up as soon as possible, and 
to take their bail for the remainder of the vacation on condition 
that they would give security for their good behaviour whilst at 
liberty ; in other words, that they would engage not to make 
the Government unpopular by recounting their wrongs. ' 

This proposal was adopted by the judges without difficulty. 
They were even prepared to go farther. Not only would they 
Sept. 30. offer the bail on the King's terms, but they would 
ado 'ted b ^ er ' lt as a matter f favour, not as a right to which 
the judges, the prisoners were legally entitled. 2 Even with this 
Charles was not satisfied. He required that if the prisoners 

once refused the grace offered them, they should not 
Further be allowed another chance unless they first asked 

his pardon. On this point, however, the judges 
w r ere firm. Hyde answered that the prisoners would not be so 
foolish as to reject the favour offered to them, yet, ' if they 
should be so gross,' and should afterwards repent of their folly, 
' bailable they are by law.' 

The King insisted. He sent his letter empowering the 

judges to offer bail, but accompanied with a warning 

that if his grace was refused the prisoners should 
' neither have their liberty by his letter or by other means till they 

1 The King to the Judges of the King's Bench, Sept. 9 ; Heath to 
Dorchester, Sept. 10, S. P. Dom. cxlix. 37 ; i. 37. 
* Hyde to Dorchester, Sept. 30, ibid, cxlix. no. 


had acknowledged their fault.' 1 The next morning they were 
admitted one by one before the Court. The bond for good 

Oct behaviour was undoubtedly in the power of the 
A bond for judges to demand. By the prisoners it was regarded 
haviour de- as a deadly insult, for it was seldom if ever asked, 
manded. except from keepers of disorderly houses, from women 
of profligate life, or from turbulent disturbers of the peace. 
One of the seven, Walter Long, after a quarter of an hour's 
resistance, accepted the terms at the urgent entreaty of his 
counsel. Not one of the others followed his example. 
Sfof'lhe y When he found that he stood alone, he bitterly re- 
pnsoners. p ente( j his weakness, complained that he had been 
circumvented, and entreated in vain to be sent back to share 
the imprisonment of his comrades. 2 

The judges were in a difficulty. The pth would quickly 
come, when they were legally bound to give bail if it was asked 

Oct. 4. for, though they might persist in coupling their offer 
The judges w j t h ^g condition which had been rejected. The 

and the , J 

Kin e- King had forbidden them to grant bail after the first 

refusal till the prisoners had asked his pardon. Hyde suppli- 
cated Charles to revoke his decision, 3 and he and Whitelocke 
were ordered to wait on the King at Hampton Court. 4 They 
found him in a good humour. It is possible that he thought 
the chance that the prisoners would now give way was too slight 
to be taken into account. He always wished, he said, to 
comply with the opinion of his judges as long as they did not 
speak in riddles. He would raise no further objection to the 
re-appearance of the prisoners on the 9th. 

When the gih came the seven appeared at the bar. This 

1 Dorchester to Hyde, Oct. i ; Hyde to Dorchester, Oct. I ; Dorchester 
to Hyde, Oct. 2, S. P. Dom. cl. 3, 4, io. 

2 Narrative of Proceedings, ibid. cl. 85. 

* Hyde to Dorchester, Oct. 4, ibid. cl. 22. 

4 This interview is dated Sept. 30 by Rushworth (i. 682), but the letters 
which we have on that date and the following days seem incompatible with 
the date. After the 4th it is quite in its pla'je. Besides, it accounts for 
the want of any answer to Hyde's letter of that date, all the rest of the 
correspondence being carefully preserved. 


time they all refused the terms offered. Long, his few days of 

Oct unwelcome liberty having come to an end, briskly 

The bond for placed himself by the side of the others, and thus 

vour again ' by yielding his body once more to prison, he set 

his mind at liberty.' The three puisne judges tried 
their best to explain away the condition of bail as unimportant. 
Hyde alone threatened the prisoners with the consequences of 
their folly. If they did not accept the King's offer now they 
might, he told them, be left in prison, it might be for seven 
years. 1 

Hyde was sick of it all. There was no dignity in the part 
he was called on to play to sustain him. Why, he asked Heath, 

impatiently, was any further trouble to be taken ? Fur- 
What isto ther proceedings were unnecessary. ' The best way 

were to dispose of them either where they now are 
or to other prisons at the King's pleasure, and there leave them 
as men neglected until their own stomachs came down, and 
not to prefer any information at all, they being now safe, and 
so shall continue.' Heath would not hear of so high-handed a 
proceeding. 2 He had confidence in the strength of his own 
position, and he was not afraid to speak out the arguments in 
which he trusted in the face of a hostile world. He brought 
in his information against Eliot, Holies, and Valentine, those 
who had taken the principal part in the attack upon the Speaker. 
Hyde might well shrink back. Events had conspired to 
thrust forward the judges into a position which it was impos- 
sible for them to hold. The storm of the political battle raged 
around them, and they were dragged forth to act as arbiters 

' Narrative, S. P. Dom. cl. 85. State Trials, iii. 288. 

2 Heath to Dorchester, Oct. 13, 5. P. Dom. cl. 53. Hyde's opinion 
can only be gathered from Heath's letter, from which the words in the text 
are given. Hyde's meaning is therefore left in obscurity. I suspect that 
he meant that, as the Petition of Right had been obeyed, the cause of im- 
prisonment had been shown, and bail had been refused, the prisoners might 
be left where they were simply on the ground that they had refused to give 
bail. It seems incredible that a Chief Justice should argue, even in Hyde's 
position, that the punishment for their action in Parliament ought to be 
perpetual imprisonment without trial, unless there had been some quibble 
to fall back upon. 


where arbitration was impossible. 1 The Commons had spurned 
their decisions, and now the King, with more outward show 
The judges f respect, waved away their claims to measure his 
n!irto t0 the b " P out i ca l authority by the standard of legal prece- 
Ki "g- dents and maxims. It was so clear to him that his 

own position was legal, that he could not understand the scru- 
ples of the judges. At this very moment he was treating one 
of them with contumely, and was doing his best to present to 
his subjects the men on whose judgments he wished to rely as 
the tools of a Government which would tolerate no decision of 
which it did not approve. 

The Chief Baron, Sir John Walter, had every claim to the 
consideration of the King. He had been his Attorney-General 
when he was Prince of Wales, and was universally 
Chief Baron respected for his ability and integrity. Up to the Long 
Vacation his course had been eminently satisfactory 
to Charles. In the Court of Exchequer he had refused to allow 
the replevins for the goods seized for non-payment of duties, 
and he had encouraged the King to proceed against the im- 
prisoned members of Parliament. 

Soon after the beginning of Michaelmas Term, however, 
Walter received a visit from Coventry. The Lord Keeper had 
come to suggest to him that he should petition the 
to resign his King to be allowed to retire from the Bench. His 
Majesty, it appeared, was displeased with him on 
account of his laxity, on the circuit from which he had just 
returned, in enforcing the obligation of his subjects 
to attend musters. Walter protested that there had 
been no laxity at all. The King refused to accept the explana- 
tion. He sent Coventry back to ask the Chief Baron 
whether he intended to ' submit himself to his Ma- 
jesty, or stand to his trial.' Walter replied that he would stand 

' The notion that the judges could settle all political quarrels is some- 
thing like the notion that arbitration can settle all international quarrels. 
In both cases much can be done when both parlies are agreed on the prin- 
ciples of the point at issue, and merely ask for their application. In neither 
case is there sufficient physical force to compel submission when there is 
disagreement as to principles. 


to his trial. " I desire," he wrote* " to be pardoned for making' 1 
a surrender of my patent, for that were to punish myself. I do 
with confidence stand upon my innocency and faithful service 
to his Majesty, and therefore will abide my trial." 2 

Charles was unprepared for such an answer. As always 
happened, he was disconcerted by firm but quiet opposition. 
Walter held his office by patent ' as long as he should behave 
well,' and -the scandal of an open investigation, which at the 
most could only result in proof of negligence, was of all things 
most to be deprecated at a time when Charles was appealing 
to the judges to arbitrate between himself and his people. He 
shrank from the Chief Baron's challenge. If, how- 
He is sus- ever, he could not deprive Walter of his office, he 
could suspend him from the exercise of his judicial 
functions. 3 Walter, therefore, continued to bear the title of 
Chief Baron of the Exchequer, but during the year of life which 
remained to him, he never again took his seat upon the Bench. 

Contemporaries agreed to regard the charge about the mus- 
ters as a mere subterfuge. The real cause of Charles's dis- 
pleasure, they held, was that Walter, after having ex- 

ProbaWe . ' J 

reasons for horted him to proceed against the members, 4 now 
step ' turned round, and expressed himself strongly against 
the course which had been adopted. If this was the case, 
Charles might very well have taken offence at so sudden a 
change of opinion, and might have charged him, as he is said 

1 i.e. ' to be excused from.' 

2 Coventry to the King, Oct. 12 ; Dorchester to Coventry, Oct. 13 ; 
Coventry to Dorchester, Oct. 14, S. P. Dom. cl. 47, 52, 58. 

3 Gresley to Puckering, Oct. 24, Court and Times, ii. 35. 

4 Salvetti dwells upon this point. He says (News-Letter, Oct. ',), that 
Walter was suspended, ' per havere da principio consigliato sua Maestli 
d' agitare contro di questi gentilhuomini come fine ad hora ha fatto, et che 
dipoi giuditiariamente si fusse gettato alia popularita.' That he had done 
this judicially is a mistake. Soranzo says that the judges had been ordered 
to condemn the prisoners, and that the King had been much disgusted by 
their refusal to do so. He had accordingly suspended one, ' et dicono lui 
stato quello che piu degl' altri affermo doversi venir alia retentione, perche 

vi. eran leggi che li condannavano. ' Soranzo's despatch, N ct ' ' 3 , Ven, 

VOL. VII. 1 


to have done, with ' dealing dautelously, and not plainly, con- 
cerning the Parliament men.' l 

It is possible too that a further consideration was not with- 
out weight with Charles. The case of the members of Parlia- 
ment was to be decided in the King's Bench, and as 

Chambers's . 

case in the far as that case was concerned, it was of no practical 
importance what Walter might think about the matter. 
The cases connected with the levy of tonnage and poundage 
would, however, come before the Court of Exchequer, and it 
would be highly inconvenient for Charles to have them decided 
Questioner before a Chief Baron who was likely to adopt the 
Chamber popular view. If reliance can be placed on a state- 
jurisdiction ment which has reached us. it would seem that the 

in the Ex- 
chequer. Barons of the Court, with Walter at their head, had 

already remonstrated strongly with the Lord Treasurer for at- 
tempting to levy Chambers's fine before the question of its 
legality had been adjudged. After Walter's removal no further 
difficulty was raised. 2 The three remaining Barons dealt sum- 
marily with Chambers's plea questioning the jurisdiction of the 
Star Chamber. That Court, they informed him, was erected 
many years before the statute of Henry VII. to which he had 
appealed as limiting its powers. It was ' one of the most high 
and honourable Courts of Justice,' and to deliver one who was 
committed by the decree of one of the courts of justice was 
not the usage of the Exchequer. 3 The proceedings on the 

1 Whitelocke, Mem. 1 6. He gives as Walter's opinion ' that a Parlia- 
ment-man for misdemeanour in the House criminally out of his office and 
duty, might be only imprisoned, and not further proceeded against.' This 
opinion, if indeed it proceeded from Walter, is so strange as to be unin- 
telligible as it stands. It is possible that we have here a distorted report 
of the words of Hyde, whatever they may have been exactly, to which 
Heath replied on Oct. 13. See p. in. 

2 The following note occurs on the back of a MS. account of the pro- 
ceedings in the Exchequer in Chambers's case. " The 2 of July, 1629, a 
fieri facias cap. and extent from the Lord Treasurer and Chancellor of the 
Exchequer without the consents of the Lord Chief Baron and other Barons, 
who disavowed the proceedings as being out of the due course of the law." 
Add. MSS. 11,056, fol. 39 b. 

1 Rush-worth, i. 676. 


main question of the right to tonnage and poundage dragged 
on for some time longer, apparently without any wish on the 
part either of the Government or of the judges to bring them 
to an issue. 

From these intrigues it is pleasant to turn to Eliot and his 

companions in suffering. On October 29, together with Holies 

and Valentine, Eliot was transferred from the Tower 

Oct. 29. 

EHot in the to the Marshalsea, ' from a palace to a country house,' 
Marshaisea. ^ he p ] ayf - ul j y expressed it, in order that he might 
be in the custody of the authorities of the court which was to 
determine his case. It was not long before Holies, worn out 
by the importunities of his wife and friends, consented to give 
the security for good behaviour which would set him at liberty 
till the day of trial. 1 

Some weeks would have to be passed by Eliot in his new 
prison before the case was ripe for a hearing. They were spent 
by him without hope of better times in this life, but in the quiet 
and cheerful confidence of well-doing. He had none of the 
self-consciousness of the aspirant to martyrdom. He had 
words of playful and tender affection for his friends, serious 
thoughts about the prerogative of kings at home, and about 
new homes for exiled religion in far America. He had not a 
word of scorn for his adversaries, not a word of regret for his 
comrades' desertion. Now and then came a friendly letter 
from Hampden or Luke, with presents of game and country 
cheer. Selden and Strode came to join him in the Marshalsea 
before long. Here he was allowed greater liberty than in the 
Tower, and was permitted, under due guardianship, to attend 
the preaching at St. Mary Overies. s 

At last, on January 26, Eliot, Holies, and Valentine once 

more stood together at the King's Bench bar. Heath's in- 

l630 . formation now at last went directly to the point. 

jan 26. There was no longer any attempt to escape from the 

Heath sin- . J . . 1 l 

formation, full assertion of the jurisdiction of the Court over 
actions done in Parliament. The Attorney General did not 
urge that there had been a conspiracy in a private house during 

1 Gresley to Puckering, Nov. 5 ( n ot i), Court and Times, ii. 36. 

2 Forster, Sir y, Eliot, ii. 293. 


the adjournment, or that the Parliament had ceased to be a Par- 
liament after the King's orders to adjourn had been conveyed 
tp it The conspiracy, he now declared, had been formed in 
Parliament itself, to resist the King's lawful order, and to rend 
asunder the links which bound the King to his subjects by 
calumniating the ministers of the Crown, and by assaulting the 
Speaker. All this had been done in order to compel the House 
to listen to an invitation to the people to refuse obedience to 
the King. 1 

To this the prisoners answered by denying the jurisdiction 

of the court over acts committed in Parliament. The judges 

Jan. 7. tried to limit the issue as much as possible. They 

The judges declared that on the main question their minds were 

try to limit i 

the issue. made up already, and that all the twelve judges had 
concurred in resolving that an offence committed in Parlia- 
ment, criminally or contemptuously, might, when Parliament 
came to an end, be punished in another court. The only ques- 
tion to be argued was whether the King's Bench was the proper 
court to punish it. 

Mason, who undertook the defence of Eliot, took no notice 

of this intimation. He roved over the whole field of inquiry, 

and was told by the Court that a great part of his 

Arguments . . . _ 

on behalf of argument was nothing to the present question. Cal- 
the prisoners. thro ^ who followed on Valentine's behalf, was more 

discreet. He argued that there was no instance of the inter- 
ference of the King's Bench with cases in which Parliamentary 
privilege was involved, excepting when a capital offence was 
alleged to have been committed. If the Court took cognisance 
of the present charge, it would be impossible to draw the line 
at which its interference was to stop. If treason or murder 
were committed in Parliament, they might indeed be questioned 
out of Parliament ; but if words were to be called to account 
on the ground that they had been spoken ' maliciously and 
seditiously,' then ' all actions of Parliament men ' might, ' under 
pretence of malice,' be drawn within the sphere of the Court. 
Besides, Parliament was a superior court to the King's Bench, 
and as such was not subject to its jurisdiction. 
1 Information, State Trials, iii. 320. 


Heath, in reply, admitted that some actions were covered 
by Parliamentary privilege ; but he drew the line not at capital 
Heath's offences but at criminal offences. If no precedent 
reply. could be found for calling in question such actions 

as those of which the prisoners had been guilty, the reason was 
that no such offence had ever been committed before. For 
the present, however, the only question was whether the Court 
had the right of punishment on the hypothesis that the offence 
was proved to have been committed. If it had not, there 
would undoubtedly be a failure of justice whenever, as in the 
present case, a Parliament came to an end without taking 
action in the matter. Even if a new Parliament were disposed 
at some future time to seek out the criminal, it could have no 
official knowledge of the facts of the case. 

The judgment delivered was a foregone conclusion. The 
reasons by which it was prompted found their fullest expression in 
judgment tne m outh of Whitelocke, the only one of the judges 
of the Court. on t h e bench who had had personal experience of 
Parliamentary life. The offence charged against the prisoners, 
he said, was one tending to the destruction of the commonwealth. 
Whiteiocke's ^ was true that Parliament was a high court, and 
argument. |-j ie King's Bench an inferior court. But Parliament 
itself was not called in question. The issue lay between the 
King and some private persons. " You have," he said, "' in every 
commonwealth a power that hath this superiority, that do they 
right or wrong, are subject unto no control but of God, and 
that in this kingdom is the King. But no other within the realm 
hath this privilege. It is true that that which is done in Parlia- 
ment by consent of all the House shall not be questioned 
elsewhere ; but if any private member puts off the person 
of a judge, and puts on the person of a malefactor, becoming 
seditious, is there such sanctimony in the place that they may 
not be questioned for it elsewhere? . . . There is no man 
hath more privilege than a minister, in regard he preacheth 
the word of God, yet if he fall on matter of slander to the 
State, his coat shall not privilege him. So, if a Parliament 
man, that should be a man of gravity and wisdom, shall decline 
his gravity, and fall on matter of sedition, he hath made 


himself incapable of that privilege, although I conceive the 
Parliament to be the best servant the King hath, and the 
commonwealth cannot stand without it. I have been a Par- 
liament man almost these twenty years, yet I never observed 
any inveighing against the person of any great man, but we 
followed the matter, although we thought that there were a 
great offenders then as at any time. Suppose a judge of this 
court flies into gross invectives and leaves his office, shall this 
judge in Court of Oyer and Terminer plead his privilege ? No, 
for you did this as a defarner, not a judge." 1 

But for one consideration, it would be impossible to resist 
this argument. If Parliament was to be nothing more than the 
high court which in technical langauge it still is, it 
tion^f iL would be for the public benefit that a power should 
exist strong enough to impose upon its members 
the restraints to which every other Englishman submits his 
language and his actions. It was because Parliament was 
rapidly becoming more than a high court that VVhitelocke's 
argument was invalid. It was unconsciously putting in a 
claim to share in the superiority which, as Whitelocke said, was 
subject to no control. By-and-by it would vindicate that supe- 
riority to itself. Privileges which might be lightly regarded 
when the machinery of government was working easily, became 
matters of life and death when the different powers of the 
constitution were eyeing one another suspiciously, ready before 
long to sound the challenge to civil war. Calthrop had said 
that if malice could bring words within the jurisdiction of the 
King's Bench, malice might be imputed to anyone. To sur- 
render the point at issue was to renounce the weapon without 
which victory in the approaching strife was hardly possible. 

It was simply impossible that this broad view of the case 
should be taken by the judges. Even Eliot did not avow it 
probably hardly thought of it in the self-communings of his 
heart. With him resistance proceeded rather from instinctive 
defiance of wrong than from a deliberate foreknowledge of the 
path before him. As yet the Court had only claimed its juris- 

1 State Trials, iii. 293. Harg. MSS. 25, fol. 2. I have taken extracts 
indiscriminately from the two reports. 


diction. It had further to decide whether an offence had been 
r committed. For the rest of the time allowed for the 

Qaestion i\ . . . . - . , 

criminal^/ preparation of the defence neither Eliot nor his friends 
were idle. They seem to have thought it possible to 
discover some form which would enable them to defend them- 
selves without betraying the privileges of Parliament. They 
met with unexampled difficulties. Counsel could not be 
brought together at their summons, either because the lawyers 
shrank from embarking further in a cause so displeasing to the 
King, or because they knew that it would be perfectly hopeless 
to discover a form of words which would satisfy Eliot and the 
judges as well. At last, on February 1 2, the lawyers 
were collected, and a paper was drawn up reciting 
once more Eliot's reasons for declining the jurisdiction of the 
court. Struck down by illlness, the result of fatigue brought 
on by his exertions in preparing his case, Eliot was unable to 
be in court on the day when judgment was pronounced. 1 

Holies and Valentine, however, were there, refusing as 
he would have refused to acknowledge the jurisdiction of the 
Thejudg- court by pleading to the charge. Jones, who de- 
ment, livered the judgment, took unworthy advantage of 
their silence, treating it as an acknowledgment of their fault. 
Eliot was sentenced to a fine of 2,ooo/., Holies to 1,000 
marks, Valentine, as being less wealthy, to 5oo/. None of 
them was to be released from prison without acknowledgment 
of his offence and security for good behaviour. 2 

The ground on which the judgment was based was the 

generality of the charges brought by Eliot in the House. He 

might have accused any particular Privy Councillor 

th*oSL as a preparation for an impeachment. He had, 

drawnln'h novvever > brought a sweeping charge against Privy 

Councillors in general, and, as he could not possibly 

have intended to impeach the Privy Council as a body, his 

words must be regarded as malicious. 

Though the distinction was not without ground, it would be 
impossible to maintain it in practice. A member out of favour 

1 Forster, SirJ. Eliot, ii. 315-322. 2 State Trials, iii. 309. 


at Court would be sure to let drop some words which might be 

interpreted as a general accusation, and he would find himself 

face to face with the judges. The rough common-sense view 

of the situation was taken by Dorchester when he 

Dorchester's *_ r i i 11 

viewofthe said that the object of the trial was to let the world 
see that Parliament men must be responsible for 
their words and actions in other courts, and so they will be 
more moderate and circumspect hereafter, and the King, 
when he finds good, may meet his people with so much the 
more assurance that they will never transgress in the point of 
due respect and obedience;' l an opinion which fully justified 
Eliot in refusing submission to a claim which was certain 
sooner or later to pass into the assertion of a right to control 
Parliamentary speeches of every kind. 

Eliot knew that he had no rnercy to expect from Charles. 
The way was made easy for the other prisoners to make 
Treatment of tne ' r submission, and all but two of them were soon 
theprisoners. at liberty^ whilst some of them were even allowed 
to leave their prisons without any submission at all. It was 
not so with Eliot. It was from Eliot's lips that the challenge 
of the King's authority had first come. It was Eliot who 
presented himself before Charles's eyes as the malignant 
accuser of Buckingham, who had struck down the minister 
in order that he might strike down the King. To those who 
know him for what he was, no caricature could be more dis- 
torted than such a portrait. It is indeed no service to histori- 
cal truth to paint him as a faultless prodigy. It is enough to 
know him as a man, sometimes mistaken, but never wilfully 
blind to truth, equally ready to brand with withering scorn the 
traitor to his country, and to turn his own cheek to the petulant 
reproaches of those whose blows were only directed against 
himself. The last trial of his patience was that he was deserted 
in the hours of watching by those who had stood shoulder to 
shoulder with him in the excitement of the battle. Yet, even 
for them he had no word of reproof, as he had no word of 
regret for his own calamities. He was still in the prime of life 

1 Dorchester to Fleming, March 3, 5. P. Dom. clxii. 18. 


only thirty-eight years of age when liberty is sweet. But, 
like Luther at Worms, it was not in him to do otherwise than 
he did. A word of submission would have set him free to 
revisit his Cornish home and the dear ones whom it contained. 
That word he would not speak. He had taken care to relieve 
his children from the consequences of the King's anger. 
When the Sheriffs officers inquired at Port Eliot for property 
on which to levy the fine, they were told that the man whom 
they believed to be the owner of that fair estate had nothing 
which he could call his own. Everything had been made over 
to trustees for the use of his family. It was only with his 
body that he was able to answer the demands made upon him. 
"I am now freed," he wrote to a friend, "from the tedious 
attendance of courts and counsel, and am passing again to the 
observance only of myself." l In the highest sense he be- 
longed to himself alone. In a lower sense he belonged to the 
King and to the King's officers. "Mr. Lieutenant," said the 
Marshal of the King's Bench as he delivered him at the 
Tower, " I have brought you this worthy knight, whom I bor- 
rowed of you some months ago, and now do repay him again." 2 

Eliot's many friends were struck with admiration at his 
self-devotion. " The judgment upon you," wrote Kirton, "is 
blown amongst us with wonder attending it. For my own 
part I can wonder at nothing ; but I think that that man who 
doth not take your judgment as in part a judgment upon him- 
self, doth fail either in honesty or discretion. I will use no 
more words unto you of it, because I know you are so well 
composed that things of this nature, although never so high, 
slack not your resolutions, or move you to be otherwise than you 
were. The time may come that such virtues may be regarded." 3 

Many years were to pass away before Eliot's principles 
Yethisviews were fully adopted by the nation. The mass of 
onVJiart'aiiy mankind is never moved by the fear of impending 
accepted. evils. To the farmer as he plodded on his daily 
rounds, to the trader as he looked for customers in his shop, 

1 Eliot to Kirton, Feb. 20. Forster, Sir J. Eltot, ii. 326. 

2 Meade to Stuteville, March 13, Court and Jlmes, ii. 66. 
8 Kirton to Eliot, March. Forster, Sir J. Eliot, ii. 327. 


it was nothing that the power exercised by the King might 
possibly be put forth at some future time to the detriment of 
religion or of commerce. The ecclesiastical innovations were 
as yet confined to a very few localities. The Custom House 
officers did not as yet exact a single penny more than had 
been paid without sign of reluctance for many years. On the 
other hand, the events of the last session had made it plain 
that the objects at which Eliot aimed could only be attained 
by defiance of the King ; and much as the intelligent classes 
were dissatisfied with the course which Charles had taken, not 
even they, and still less the bulk of the nation, were as yet pre- 
pared to defy the King. 

It was well that it should be so, well that the belief that it 
was impossible for a sovereign to cut himself off from sympathy 
with his people, and yet to keep free from actual misgovernment, 
should be slowly accepted. To Eliot belongs the glory of 
being the first to see plainly that this could not be, that 
Charles's isolation was a fruitful seed of evil. It was for him 
to suffer as those suffer who see that which their fellows cannot 
see. Like the Swiss warrior, he had gathered into his own 
bosom the spear-points of the adverse host. His countrymen 
would follow by-and-by through the breach which he had 
made at the cost of his life. 




THE permanent interest of the judicial proceedings which have 
just been narrated centres in Eliot's protest. Their importance 

for the immediate future lay in the tacit renunciation 


The judges by the judges of that high authority which the 
Petition of Commons had thrust upon them in 1628. They re- 
Right, fused to be arbitrators between the King and the 
nation. They accepted the position which Bacon had assigned 
them, of lions beneath the throne, upon whom was imposed the 
duty of guarding the throne from attack. All that had been 
gained by the Petition of Right seemed to be lost in an instant. 
What would it matter that the judges were ready to enforce 
the specification of the cause of committal, if they were ready 
to be satisfied with the cause shown, whatever it might be ? 
The Petition, in truth, had laid down a great principle, which 
could only be carried out to its logical results by the strenuous 
efforts of future Parliaments. 

Would Parliament ever meet again ? The real line of 
separation between the King and the House of Commons had 
lain in the religious question. So decided had been 
The religious the opposition that it seemed hardly possible that a 
question. compromise could be discovered which would enable 
them to meet on friendly terms. At first si^ht, indeed, it might 
seem that the policy involved in the King's Declaration on Re- 
ligion was more likely to win general support than the zealous 
intolerance of the Commons. Laud's comment on the Resolu- 


lion in which the Lower House had taken its stand upon the 
Calvinistic interpretation of the Articles, was full of promise. 
March. "All consent in all ages," he wrote, "as far as I have 
ment'on'the" observed, to an article or canon, is to itself, as it 
thrcom" f * s ^ a ^ down in the body of it ; and if it bear more 
mons- senses than one it is lawful for any man to choose 

what sense his judgment directs him to, so tha.t it be a sense 
according to the analogy of the faith, and that he hold it peace- 
ably, without distracting the Church, and this till the Church 
which made the article determine the sense ; and the wisdom 
of the Church hath been in all ages, or the most, to require 
consent to articles in general as much as may be, because that 
is the. way of unity, and the Church in high points requiring 
assent to particulars hath been rent." 1 

A few words in a letter to a foreign correspondent carry us 

still more deeply into those inmost feelings of Laud's heart 

which he usually veiled from the eye of the world. 

July 14. J J 

His letter to " I have moved every stone," he wrote to the learned 
Vossius, " that those thorny and perplexed questions 
might not be discussed in public before the people, lest we 
should violate charity under the appearance of truth. I have 
always counselled moderation, lest everything should be thrown 
into confusion by fervid minds to which the care of religion is 
not the first object. This perhaps has not given satisfaction ; 
but I remember how seriously the Saviour commanded charity 
to his disciples, and how cautiously and patiently the Apostles 
commanded us to treat the weak. If I perish by these efforts 
of mine, 2 and become,- as usually happens, a prey to the 
victorious litigawt, my reward is in my own bosom, nor shall I 
seek comfort out of myself, except in God. For the present I 
have little to hope, much to fear. The Reformed Church has 
no greater reason for regret and precaution than the danger lest, 
at a time when she is being attacked by the sword amongst 
other nations, she should here and with you where she dwells 
more safely, be torn in pieces by her own hands, and so by a 

1 Prynne, Canterbury s Doom, 163. 

2 I suppose this is the meaning of 'si his artibus peream.' The letter 
is in Latin. 


cruel lent should first be broken up into fragments, and then, 
by gradual subdivision, into minute atoms, and should so vanish 
into nothing. . . . For my own part, I will labour with the 
grace of God that truth and peace may kiss one another. If, 
for our sins, God refuses to grant this, I will hope for eternal 
peace for myself as soon as possible, leaving to God those who 
break that kiss asunder, that He may either convert them, as I 
heartily desire, or may visit them with punishment" l 

Dislike of arrogant and self-sufficient dogmatists is plainly 
to be read in these words of Laud. For all that, the true ring 
HOW far did of liberty is not in them. There is none of that 
thT'idejTof* sympathy with the aspirations of the limited human 
toleration? mind to win by arduous struggle a footing on the out- 
works of truth which is the sustenance of the spirit of tolera- 
tion. For speculative thought Laud cared nothing. Not truth, 
but peace, was the object which he pursued. Hence the in- 
terest which he took in the fortunes of that Dutch Church 
which came so short of his own episcopal standard gave no 
warrant of equal liberality at home. He never felt himself to 
be burdened with faults committed outside his own special 
sphere of action, and he might therefore be easily moved to 
treat with extreme severity in England practices which in a 
foreign country would cause him no more than a passing annoy- 
ance. In England his hand was likely to be heavily 

Misestimate . _,. , . f . 

of external felt. The pursuit of peace in preference to the 
uences. p ursu jt o f truth was certain to be accompanied by 
an exaggerated estimate of the importance of external influences 
over the mind. It was characteristic in him to speak of Aris- 
totle, the philosopher who taught that virtue owed its strength 
to the formation of habits, as his great master in humanist 
His love of outward observances, of the Beauty of Holiness, as 
he fondly called it, was partly founded on a keen sense of the 
incongruity of dirt and disorder with sacred things ; partly upon 
the recognition of the educative influence of regularity and ar- 
rangement. There was in his mind no dim sense of the spiritual 
depths of life, no reaching forward to ineffable mysteries veiled 

1 Laud to Vossius, July 14, Works, vi. 265. * Wotks, iv. 59. 


from the eye of flesh. It was incomprehensible to him why 
men should trouble themselves about matters which they could 
not understand. His acts of reverence had nothing in common 
with the utter self-abnegation of the great Italian falling as a 
dead body falls before the revelation of those things which eye 
had not seen, nor ear heard. If he is called upon to defend his 
practice of bowing towards the altar upon entering a church, 
he founds his arguments not on any high religious theme, but 
upon the custom of the Order of the Garter. To him a church 
was not so much the temple of a living Spirit, as the palace of 
an invisible King. He had a plain prosaic reason for every- 
thing that he did. 

Even those strange entries in his diary which have some- 
times been treated as if they contained the key of his mind 
His dreams have nothing imaginative in them. There is no 
and omens, thought of following a heavenly voice when he re- 
cords the falling down of a picture or the dropping out of a 
tooth. " God grant," he writes, " that this be no omen," as if 
there were just a possibility that the invisible King might have 
something to tell him in this way. Yet though he notices the 
occurrence sufficiently to make him think it worth while to jot 
it down for future comparison with events, he never thinks of 
acting upon it 

To form the habits of Englishmen in order that there might 

be peace amongst them, was the task which Laud set before 

him. The Declaration on Religion had been the 

Policy of the . . . 

Declaration first great step in this direction. The excitement 

on Religion. , , 1-1 i_ n * i i 

caused by polemical controversy must be allayed ty 
the prohibition of controversy. It remained to foster a sense 
of union amongst those whom theological argument had divided. 
If all men worshipped in the same way, used the same forrr.s 
and ceremonies, pronounced the same words, and accompanied 
them with the same gestures, a feeling of brotherhood would 
gradually spring up. The outward and visible was to be the 
road to the inward and spiritual. "Since I came into this 
place," he wrote long afterwards in defence of his conduct, " I 
laboured nothing more than that the external public worship 


of God too much slighted in most parts of this kingdcra 
Uniformity might be preserved, and that with as much decency 
and unity. an( j uniformity as might be ; being still of opinion 
that unity cannot long continue in the Church where unifor- 
mity is shut out at the church door. And I evidently saw that 
the public neglect of God's service in the outward face of it, 
and the nasty lying of many places dedicated to that service, 
had almost cast a damp upon the true and inward worship of 
God ; which, while we live in the body, needs external helps, 
and all little enough to keep it in any vigour." l 

Forming so high an estimate of the value of external in- 
fluence, he had no difficulty in accepting fully the Royal supre- 
macy. As the task of a bishop was in his eyes chiefly 

Laud and J . , . . , ."" j 

the Royal the enforcement of regulations, he naturally looked 
3nty ' with the highest respect to that authority which was 
able to compel the observance of those regulations. All the 
thoughts which had led the great ecclesiastics of the Middle 
Ages to regard the merely external authority of kings as some- 
thing infinitely inferior to the spiritual power of the guardians 
of the divinely appointed faith had no place in his mind. What 
he wanted was force to carry out his ideas, and that force he 
found in the King. He did not even care to theorise about 
the source of this authority. The notion of a Divine right of 
kingship hardly assumed any real prominence anywhere till 
Charles's title to rule was questioned, and it never assumed pro- 
minence at any time in the mind of Laud. It was enough for 
him to accept the Royal supremacy in the Church as it was 
established by existing law and custom, and to use it for the 
great ends which he hoped to accomplish by its means. 

Laud, therefore, was ready to speak everywhere in the name 

of the King. Charles was ready to accept the responsibility. 

Though he could no more originate a scheme for 

Kingdom- the reform of the Church than he could originate a 

scheme for the recovery of the Palatinate, he would 

give his confidence to Laud as he had given his confidence to 

Buckingham. He, too, thought of the outward and visible 

before the inward and spiritual. To him, too, the fervent in- 

1 Works, iv. 60. 


dividual zeal of Puritanism was an unfathomable mystery, and 
its fierce dogmatism a hateful annoyance. When it had been 
driven out of the land, England would be herself again, as loyal 
and obedient as she had been to her Tudor sovereigns. He 
took counsel, as Bacon would have said, of the time past, not 
of the time present. 

Hitherto Laud had not been the foremost object of the 
attacks of the Puritans. During the last session Neile and the 
March 29. Durham ceremonialists had almost covered their field 
"rTty n m pu " of vision. In his own diocese Laud was regarded 
London. more correctly. His name was coupled with that ot 
Weston in the popular imagination of the Londoners. Libels 
were scattered about the streets, threatening his life. " Laud, 
look to thyself," was read upon one of these ; " be assured thy 
life is sought. As thou art the fountain of all wickedness, re- 
pent thee of thy monstrous sins, before thou be taken out ot 
the world." Weston, to whom similar threats were addressed, 
was easily frightened. Dread of assassination haunted him to 
the last. Laud was absolutely above fear, as he was absolutely 
above self-seeking and corruption. " Lord," he wrote in his 
diary, as the only notice fit for him to take of the insult, " I 
am a grievous sinner; but, I beseech thee, deliver my s.oul 
from them that hate me without a cause." l 

As long as Abbot lived, Laud's sway in the English Church 
could never be complete. With the King's authority to rely 
Laud the upon there might be no active opposition to his 
ro"hk>n f to p " wishes, but there would be a force of inertia at the 
Puritanism. ver y centre of the ecclesiastical machinery which it 
would be impossible to overcome. Yet if he could not do all 
that he wished, he could accomplish much. Every man who 
was at issue with Puritanism knew that he could count upon a 
favourable hearing if he poured his complaints into the ear of 
the Bishop of London, and that the Bishop of London was 
sure of a favourable hearing from the King. Eavesdroppers 
and talebearers soon discovered how to set at naught the orders 
of their own bishops or the commands of laymen in authority. 

1 Works, iii. 2IO. 


Laud's influence made itself felt in the disputes by which 
the Chapter of Durham was distracted. At the Summer Assizes, 
July 19. Smart repeated his charges of the preceding year 
Smart's case. a g a i ns t jh e prebendaries who had deprived him of 
his prebend. The judges on this occasion were Yelverton and 
Trevor. Yelverton at once took Smart's part. He spoke in 
conversation of Smart's sermon as good and honest. It was 
quite right, he added, to condemn the singing of the service. 
When the organ was playing it was impossible to know what 
was said. One of the prebendaries asked him how he con- 
trived to sing psalms to the accompaniment of music. Trevor 
told him that if he would look at his Prayer-book, he would 
have no difficulty in understanding what was said. Yelverton 
would hear nothing in favour of the organ. He did not like 
whistling at the service. He had always been called a Puritan. 
He thanked God for it, and as such he would live and die. 

In this spirit he charged the jury on the following day. In- 
novations in the Church, he said, were fair matters to be dealt 
with at the assizes. The jury accordingly found a 
Velvet-ton's true bill against the prebendaries. Smart and his 
friends were in high spirits. The next morning they 
were plunged into bitter disappointment. Yelverton had all 
his life been accustomed to pass suddenly from blustering in- 
dependence to servile humility. He now changed his tone, 
scolded Smart for his conduct, delivered an address in com- 
mendation of peace and charity, and refused to allow the pro- 
ceedings to be carried further. 

All this was duly reported to Laud. Smart's own fate might 
easily be predicted. He was sentenced to degradation from 

,6 3 o. the clerical office by the Northern High Commission, 
Smart's 18 to wnose jurisdiction he had been returned. The 
sentence. disputes at Durham did not end here. Bishop Howson 
was no Puritan, and he had been one of the four bishops who 
had supported Montague in 1625 ; but he had been frightened 
at the rapid ceremonial changes at Durham, and had come 
to look upon Cosin as a firebrand whose persistence in his 
own crotchets was endangering the maintenance of peace. 
Laud was appealed to, and after a long correspondence the 



King commanded Howson to carry the dispute no further. 
Such interference with a bishop tended to bring episcopal au- 
thority into contempt, by showing that it might be wielded in 
one/ direction or another according to the varying influences 
which prevailed at Court. 1 

^ In the suppression of books in which the predestinarian 
doctrine was handled, Laud had no need of the King's assist- 

1629. ance. A decree of the Star Chamber in Elizabeth's 
o"unik?n^d re * n nac * prohibited the printing of books without 
books. the licence of one of the Archbishops or of the 
Bishop of London. Printers and authors in vain urged the argu- 
ment which Selden had supported in Parliament that the Star 
Chamber had exceeded its powers. Printers and authors were 
brought before the High Commission, and were taught to obey 
the restrictions imposed upon them at the risk of fine and im- 

In his own diocese, at least, Laud was able greatly to 

restrict, if not altogether to bring to an end, that diversity 

of practice which had long been suffered to prevail. 

ofnoncon- The Book of Common Prayer was to be accepted as 

the complete rule of worship. The ministers of the 

Church were no longer to be permitted to omit this or that 

prayer at pleasure, to stand when they were bidden to kneel, or 

to kneel when they were bidden to stand. 

Laud's chief difficulty lay with the lecturers. The parish 
clergy could hardly avoid reading Morning or Evening Prayer 
The lec . in a more or less mutilated form ; but a lecturer was 
turers. under no such obligation. He was paid by a Cor- 
poration, or by individuals, to preach and to do nothing more. 
He might remain sitting in the vestry, if he chose, till the 
service was at an end, when he could come out to ascend the 
pulpit, and to shine forth in the eyes of the congregation as 
one who was far superior to the man by whom the printed 
prayers had been recited. The lecturers were to be found 

1 Cosin's Corresfon.dt.nce, i. 155- Acts of the High Commission, App. 
A. (Surtees Society). Much correspondence is scattered through the State 
Papers. The first letter from the King to Howson is dated Nov. 3, 1631, 
Tanner MSS. Ixx. 128. 

1629 LECTURERS. 131 

chiefly in towns where there was a strong Puritan element in 
the population, and they were themselves Puritans almost to a 

To those who think it desirable that the teaching of a 
Church should be in harmony with the prevalent opinions 
of the congregations of which it is composed, the arrangement 
may seem not to have been a bad one after all. The existence 
of the lecturers provided a certain elasticity in the ecclesiastical 
institutions of the country, without which the enforcement of 
uniformity would in the long run prove impracticable. Laud 
was not likely to regard the lecturers from so favourable a point 
of view. Not only were they careless about forms and cere- 
monies, but they owed their appointment to the private action 
of the laity. Those who appointed might dismiss as well, and 
if Laud's eyes were closed to the evils of subjecting the clergy 
to the word of command from the Court, they were opened 
widely to the evils of leaving them in entire dependence upon 
the varying humours of the richer members of their congrega- 

In December Laud's meditations on the subject of lec- 
turers took shape in a series of instructions sent out by the King 
_ , to the bishops. Some clauses were applicable to 


The King's special abuses committed by the bishops themselves 
instructions. . m ^ a d m im s t ra tion of the property of their sees. 
But those which were of most general importance touched the 
preachers, and more especially the lecturers. In the first place 
the King's Declaration forbidding the introduction of contro- 
versial topics was to be strictly observed. Further, there were 
no longer to be any afternoon sermons at all. Catechizing of 
children was to take their place. In the morning sermons 
wero still permitted, but no lecturer was to be suffered to open 
his mout'h unless he had first ' read Divine Service according 
to the Liturgy printed by authority, in his surplice.' Nor was 
any lecturer to receive an appointment in a corporate town 
unless he was ready to accept ' a living with cure of souls ' 
within the limits of the Corporation. The bishops were to 
gather information on the behaviour of the preachers, and 
to ' take order for any abuse accordingly.' Lastly, in order to 

K 2 


discourage the entertainment by the wealthier country gentle- 
men of private chaplains who were dependent entirely upon 
their patrons, the Bishops were to ' suffer none but noblemen 
and men qualified by law to have a chaplain in their houses.' 

The King's instructions were the first step taken in narrow- 
ing the limits of Church union. If the lectureships were not a 
very satisfactory provision for meeting the strain of enforced 
conformity, they at least permitted diversity of opinion to mani- 
fest itself without an absolute breach of religious continuity. 
They could not be suppressed without suppressing the inde- 
pendent development of religious thought. In some way or 
another, in spite of Laud, Puritanism would find a voice in 
England. The silenced lecturer of 1629 would, if he lived 
long enough, be the triumphant Presbyterian or Independent 
of 1645, and the excluded Nonconformist of 1662. 

The King's resolution to allow no polemics in the pulpit 
was firmly taken. Davenant, Bishop of Salisbury, a man of 
,630. mark amongst the Calvinistic prelates, ventured to 
Davenam's toucn upon the forbidden topic of predestination in 
scimon. a sermon preached at Whitehall. He was at once 
summoned before the Council table to answer for his dis- 
obedience. He pleaded that he had done no more than 
explain the Articles. He was told that it was the King's will 
that ' for the peace of the Church these high questions should 
be forborne.' He received a sound rating from Harsnet, now 
Archbishop of York, and only escaped actual punishment by 
promising a judicious silence for the future. 1 

In their attempt to close discussion for ever, Charles and 
Laiid were at least impartial. In vain Dr. Brooke, the Master 
D emi ^ Trinity at Cambridge, implored permission to 
Brooke's publish a book which, as he affirmed, would crush 
the Puritans and reconcile all the difficulties. Laud 
told him coldly that he should have no objection to read his 
argument^ but that he had not changed his opinion that 'some- 
thing about these controversies' was 'unmasterable in this life.' 
As the book never reached the press, it is to be presumed that, 

1 Fuller, vi. 74. 

1630 LAUD AT OXFORD. 133 

in spite of a.vehement tirade against Puritanism from the author, 
Laud's objection was insuperable. 1 

An unexpected event brought to Laud an increase of work and 
responsibility. On April 10, 1630, the Earl of Pembroke died 

A ri] suddenly. 2 Several times during the past years men 
Pembroke's had looked up to him hopefully as a possible leader. 
He was known to be averse to all rash and unpopular 
measures, and he had a high character for disinterestedness. 
His disinterestedness, however, was merely that of a wealthy 
man with nothing to seek for himself, and who was happy in the 
possession of an affable and unruffled disposition. He had no 
force of character to enable him to control events. As Bacon 
said of him, he was 'for his person not effectual.' 3 He easily 
passed from hot opposition to the" tamest submission. With 
an intelligence greater than his power of will, he was the 
Hamlet of Charles's Court. 

No attempt was made to fill up the office of Steward of the 
Household, left vacant by Pembroke's death. Charles seemed 

April 12. to think that by leaving such posts vacant he would 
J,f ud have a stronger hold upon those who aspired to fill 


of Oxford, them. Pembroke, however, had been Chancellor of 
the University of Oxford as well, and that post, at least, could 
not be left vacant. The Earl of Montgomery, who now 
succeeded his brother in the earldom of Pembroke, was put in 
nomination by those who were faithful to the traditions of Cal- 
vinism, though it must have been difficult to discover in one 
who, as Clarendon assures us, cared for nothing but dogs 
and horses, any of those qualities which make up the Calvinist 
ideal. The election, however, fell upon Laud, though only by a 
majority of nine. The defeated party complained of unfair 
dealing ; whether truthfully or not it is now impossible to say. 4 
The University was made to feel that the days of slack 

1 Brooke to Laud, Nov. 17, Dec. I, S. P. Dom. clxxv. 69 ; clxxvi. 2 ; 
Laud to Brooke, Dec. 9, Laiufs Works, vi. 292 ; trooke to Laud, Dec, 15, 
Prynne, Canterbury's Doom, 167. 

* Meade to Stuteville, April 17, Court and Times, ii. 71. 

3 Works, vii. 446. * Laud's Works, v. 4. 


government were at an end. Laud at once attacked the riotous 
M and disorderly habits of the place. Academical 

Discipline costume was no longer to be neglected. Under- 
graduates were no longer to occupy seats destined 
for Masters of Arts. Above all the King's Declaration was to 
be enforced. Even a preacher who ventured to praise Armi- 
nianism and to revile the Synod of Dort was severely repri- 
manded. Another preacher had offended in a different way. 
He had declared 'directly against all reverence in churches, 
and all obeisance or any devout gesture in or at the receiving 
of the Communion. " If this be true," wrote Laud, "belike 
we shall not kneel neither." l 

There was little in common between the bustling energy of 

the Bishop prying into every corner of the land, and counting 

nothing too small for his regulative authority, and the 

Contrast be- , . . .. , T , rl , 

tween Laud ponderous inertia of the Lord 1 reasurer, to whom it 
and weston. ^^ the j^ggf o f arts to j eave difficulties alone, and 

who was well satisfied if he could leave to a future generation 
the problems which he was himself incapable of solving. There 
was but one man in England as untiring as Laud, and that man, 
though long admitted into the King's service, had only recently 
acquired even a very slight hold upon the King's favour. But 

little is known of Wentworth for nearly a year after 
1629. J J 

Wentworth his speech at York. 2 He was in his place in the 
aud ' House of Lords during the short session which 
followed, and it needs no evidence to prove that the proceed- 
ings of the Lower House must have left an indelible impression 
upon his mind. Whatever distrust he had felt before of the 
intolerant predominance of Calvinism ; whatever shrinking he 
had felt from the rule of a dominant House of Commons, was 
now doubled. In the maintenance and elevation of the Royal 
authority lay for him henceforth the only path of safety and 
wisdom. It was impossible for him to be content, as Charles 
and Weston were content, with the mere suspension of Parlia- 
mentary life. He knew too well that the habit of insub- 
ordination to authority could not be uprooted by mere passive 

1 Laud to Tolsoii, May 7, LauJs Works, v. 15. 2 See p. 24. 


expectation. Like Laud he perceived that it must be met face 
to face, be wrestled with and overthrown. Yet if he did not 
despise the remedial measures which seemed all-sufficient to 
Laud the training of the mind to obedience by uniformity of 
Wentworth's external worship, and the silencing of preachers who 
policy. claimed the right of declaring doctrines which en- 
gendered strife he had too much genius to be content with 
them. He required active co-operation in the service of the 
commonwealth from every man who received protection from 
the Government. In thought, if not in expression, he anti- 
cipated the watchword which the nation was hereafter to accept 
from the dying lips of her greatest sailor, that England expects 
every man to do his duty ; but he did not see that only by en- 
listing the active sympathies of those whose co-operation he 
desired could he reasonably hope for the assistance upon 
which he was forced to depend. Knowing that the mass of 
men are ignorant and prejudiced, he fancied that they would not 
merely submit to be guided, but that they would throw them- 
selves heart and soul upon his side, if only he commanded their 
services in a right direction. Wisdom, simply because it was 
wise, was to bind folly and slothfulness to its car, and to com- 
pel them to bear it swiftly onward on its triumphant path. He 
could not stoop to the slow and irregular progress which is all 
that can be expected when a nation guides its own course, nor 
could he acknowledge that a progress thus made is surer than 
the most brilliant achievement into which it is dragged panting 
and gasping for breath in the hands of a master. 

In spite of all that he succeeded in accomplishing, Went- 
worth was never able to shake himself free from the sense of 
impending failure, though he never dreamt of tracing the mis- 
chief to anything in himself. He lamented that his lot had 
fallen in an age in which he was forced to wish with all his. 
heart that 'men knew less and practised more.' l 

No idealist, it has been often said, commits so many errors 
as the practical man of the world. Eliot, with all his super- 
abundant trust in the wisdom of the House of Commons 

1 Wentworth to Conway, Oct. 14, S. P. Dom. cL 6 1. 


and his superabundant reliance upon the all-sufficiency of the 
average religious feeling of his day. never entered 

Itsweakness. . , , 

upon a course so hopeless as did Wentworth vrhen 
he set his hand to build up a compact constitutional edifice of 
which Charles was to be the corner-stone. Nor would Went- 
worth have been likely to achieve permanent success even if 
Charles had been other than he was. Wi.ling co-operation 
can never be looked for where there is no sympathy between 
the governors and the governed, no spontaneousness of action 
in those whose assistance is required. Experience teaches that 
such a sympathy and such spontaneousness of action can only 
be maintained where the government is in one sense or another 
representative. Either by the election of a controlling assembly 
or by some less direct means, the nation must be able to make 
its voice heard, unless a gulf is to open between Government 
and people which nothing short of revolutionary violence can 
close up. . 

Eliot and Wentworth indeed were of one mind as to wishing 
such a catastrophe to be averted ; but they differed as to the 
Eliot and means to be employed to ward off the danger. For 
Wentworth. ^\\Q\. it was enough that the House of Commons had 
spoken That House in his eyes truly represented the nation 
in the fervour of its religion, in the wisdom and gravity of its 
political aspirations. In Wentworth's eyes it only partially re- 
presented the nation, if it represented it at all. The lawyers 
and country gentlemen of whom it was composed were not to 
be trusted to govern England. The lawyers with their quirks 
and formulas too often stood in the way of substantial justice. 
The country gentlemen too often misused the opportunities of 
their wealth to tyrannise over their poorer neighbours. Went- 
worth therefore would appeal to the nation outside the House 
of Commons, as Chatham afterwards appealed to the nation 
outside the House of Commons. The King was to do judg- 
ment and justice fairly and equally to rich and poor. So would 
come the day when Parliament could be allowed to meet again. 
The King would not have altered his course to put himself in 
harmony with the nation, but the nation would have grown in 
intelligence to take hold of the hand offered to it by the King. 


Thus Wentworth seemed to himself to be contending for 
the old and undoubted liberties of Englishmen, for their right 
Wentworth to freedom from vexatious injustice. He was stand - 
'seff a ls s the m m S m tne ancient paths. His knowledge of history 
maintainerof ^\& hj m h ow a Henry II. and an Edward I., a 

the old con- J 

stimtion. Henry VIII. and an Elizabeth, had actually guided 
a willing people. It told him nothing of a dominant House of 
Commons reducing its Sovereign to insignificance. What it 
told him of control from the baronage, or even from Parliament 
as a body, might safely be set down as irregular and unconsti- 
tutional, the deplorable result of misgovernment. That Charles 
should ever make such violence necessary he could not bring 
himself to believe. At all events, he did not see that the King 
had made it necessary by his resistance to the House of 
Commons. As he had accused Buckingham once, so he might 
accuse Eliot now 'of ravishing at once the spheres of all 
ancient government.' 

Was there indeed a nation behind the House of Commons 
to which Wentworth could give an articulate voice, or had he 
miscalculated his strength and over-estimated his power of 
raising the inert masses to a level with the effective strength 
of the nation, in the same way as he undervalued the worth of 
those religious and moral ideas to which the political classes 
clung so tenaciously? This was the secret of the future. 
Others, Charles more especially, would have to contribute to 
the solution of the problem. Yet even if all power had been 
concentrated in Wentworth's hands, it is unlikely that he would 
have solved it successfully. He had too little attractive force 
to overcome the difficulties in his path. He was too self- 
reliant, too ready to leave his deeds to speak for themselves, 
too haughty and arrogant towards adversaries, to conciliate 
opposition, or even to be regarded by those whose cause he 
supported with thai mingled feeling of reverence and familiarity 
which marks out the true leaders of mankind. He might come 
to be looked upon as the embodiment of force. Men might 
quail before his knitted brow and his clear commanding voice. 
They would not follow him to the death as Gustavus was 
followed, or hasten to his succour as the freeholders of Bucks 


hastened to the succour of Hampden. Wentworth in his 
strength and Charles in his weakness were alike lonely amidst 
their generation. They understood not the voices which 
sounded on every side ; they drew no strength from the earth 
beneath nor from the heaven over their heads. They set before 
them the task of making men other than they were, not the task 
of helping men to make themselves other than they were. What 
could come of it but failure, disgrace, and ruin ? 

In the beginning of November 1629 a paper fell into 
Wentworth's hands which stirred his indignation to the ut- 
Nov most. The writer urged the King ' to bridle the 
Wentworth impcrtincncy of Parliament ' by taking military pos- 
the C King's session of the country, establishing fortresses guarded 
papeV which by mercenary soldiers in every town, and compelling 
he has found, the payment of new and unheard-of taxes to be levied 
by the sole authority of the Crown. 1 There was just enough 
resemblance between the course thus recommended and the 
constitutional position assumed by Wentworth to rouse his 
resentment at so gross a caricature of his own principles. He 
took the paper at once to the King, who regarded it as the 
result of a plot to bring his government into disrepute, and 
ordered inquiry to be made for the author. 2 

Wentworth, at least, was the gainer by the discovery. Five 
days after he had placed the paper in Charles's hands he took 
NOV. 10. his seat in the Privy Council. He owed his promo- 
jMv^amn* t' 011 to h' s resolution to guard from all attack the 
ciiior. prerogatives of the Crown, without infringing upon 

the outward decencies of English constitutional practice. 

The paper which shocked Wentworth and the King had a 

curious history. Soon after the dissolution of the Parliament 

of 1614, Sir Robert Dudley, the illegitimate son of 

Dudleys . . 

paper of Elizabeth's favourite Leicester, who was living in exile 
it get* into at Florence, fancied that he saw a way of gaining 
circulation. p erm j ss j on to re tum to his native soil. Together 
with a proposal to communicate to James certain naval inven- 
tions which as he asserted were such as to change entirely the 

1 A proposition for his Majesty's service, Kttshwo>-th t i. App. 12. 
1 Kawson to D'Ewes, Nov. 6, Harl. KISS. 383, fol. 90. 

1629 DUDLEY'S ADVICE. 139 

face of maritime warfare, he forwarded to Sir David Foulis, a 
Scotchman in the King's service, the very paper which was at 
last brought into unexpected notoriety. 1 

Foulis gave the paper to Somerset, and Somerset, at that 
time at the height of his favour, showed it to James. James 
would have nothing to say to it, and it was laid aside and for- 
gotten. Some years later it found its way into that great re- 
ceptacle of manuscript treasures, Sir Robert Cotton's library. 
Time went on, and Cotton entrusted the care of his books to 
his librarian, Richard James, a clever, well-informed man, who 
was not above earning money by lending his master's papers to 
the curious. In the summer of 1629, when all men were talk- 
ing about the encroachments upon Parliament, James lent this 
particular paper to Oliver St. John, a young lawyer on the 
popular side, who showed the copy which he took of it to his 
client, the Earl of Bedford. Bedford showed it to Somerset, 
who distinctly remembered that the original had once been in his 
hands. From Somerset the copy passed to the Earl of Clare, the 
father of Denzil Holies, and Clare carried it to Cotton. Cotton, 
who had quite forgotten that the original had long been in his 
own library, fancying that he had before him a revelation of the 
immediate designs of the Court, sat down to reply to its argu- 
ments, no doubt with the intention of publishing his refutation. 

Cotton was not well served. In his house was a youth who 
passed by the name of Flood, but who was commonly, though 
perhaps untruly, reported to be his natural son. 2 Like James, 
Flood saw in the paper a means of making money. He sold 
copies freely, one of which fell into Wentworth's hands. 3 

The investigation ordered traced the document through 
Cotton and the three earls to St. John. St. John was com- 
mitted to the Tower, and his chambers were searched for in- 
criminatory evidence. He stoutly affirmed that the paper had 

1 Dudley to Foulis, May 8, 1614, Fortescue Papers, 6, and note at p. 1 1. 

1 The statement rests on the assertion of D'Ewes, who is not always 
to be trusted when he brings personal charges. 

* Harsnet to Vane, Nov. 6, Court and Times, ii. 37. Dorchester to 
Edmondes, Nov. 7, 18, S. P. France. D 1 Ewes' 1 s Autobiography, ii. 39, 
Examinations of Somerset and Bedford, Slate Trials, iii. 396. 


come to him from Cotton's library, and Cotton who, as well as 

the earls, had been committed to private custody, as stoutly 

declared that he knew nothing about the matter. On 

Nov. 15. 

The King November 15, as no further light seemed likely to 
theadvke of be thrown on the mystery, Charles protested in the 
the paper. c ounc n that the suggestions made in the paper wpre 
'fitter to be practised in a Turkish state than amongst Chrh:- 
tians.' Eleven days later, much to Cotton's surprise, 
Discovery of the original manuscript was discovered in his ovn 

original, ji^.^y^ an j Foulis, who was still living, deposed 10 
the circumstances in which ii had formerly come into his hands. 
The paper thus lost much of itb supposed importance. Orders 
Prosecution na d, however, already been given to prosecute Cotton, 
ordered. g t John, and the earls in the Star Chamber, for con- 
cealment of the paper, and the proceedings were allowed to run 
their course. 1 

What Charles wanted was evidently an opportunity of 
making a protestation of his resolution to abide by the law. 

1630. He could have had no angry feeling against those 
Thedefoi- w h circulated the paper as soon as the circum- 
doned P in r stances had been explained. The hearing of the 
consequence cause had been fixed for May 20. The day arrived 

of the birth J y * 

of a Prince, and a few words had been spoken when a messenger 
hastily entered the Court and whispered in the Lord Keeper's 
ear. Coventry at once interrupted the proceedings. It had 
pleased Heaven, he said, to bless his Majesty with a son, ' a 
hopeful Prince, the great joy and expectation both of the King 
and kingdom.' His Majesty, therefore, was inclined to think 
rather of mercy than of justice. Dudley's paper should be 
burnt, but those who had circulated it might depart unharmed. 
This was the last appearance of the most notable of the de- 
fendants before the eyes of the world. The fact that an im- 
NOV. 24. portant state paper had been discovered in Cotton's 
Cotton's" library, gave rise to the suspicion that other docu- 
Hbrary. ments of the same kind might be found in his 
possession. Orders were accordingly given that he should 

1 Dorchester to Edmondes, Nov. 26, S. P. France. 

1630 BIRTH OF A PRINCE. 141 

himself prepare a catalogue of the manuscripts, with the assist- 
ance of two clerks of the Council, and that he should only 
enter the library in their presence. 1 The old man felt the 
grievance deeply. Though he was not, it is true, excluded 
from the sight of his beloved books, it was one thing to be per- 
mitted to visit his treasures in the presence of two unwelcome 
companions : it was another thing to sit at ease as the master 
of the house, with his friends chatting around him, each eager 

1631. to pay court to the dispenser of such stores of know- 
Death^>f' ledge. His death, which was at the time ascribed 
Cotton. t o hj s annoyance, took place within the year after 
his visit to the Star Chamber. The services which he ren- 
dered to historical literature will never be forgotten. In his 
own day the services which he rendered to political controversy 
were more highly appreciated. His function was to collect 
materials for others to use. His own antiquarianism was 
not enlightened by any steady and consistent view of society 
and life. At one time it led him to associate with Somerset 
and Gondomar. At another time it drew him to Eliot and 
Selden. 2 

The child whose birth formed an excuse for dropping a 
hastily undertaken prosecution was destined to strange vicis- 

l6jo . situdes. Through the fault of his parents he was 
rife future early to taste the bitterness of exile, and to be re- 
charies ii. called after years of apparently hopeless wandering 
to sit upon his father's throne. To his mother the child, dark 
and ugly as she playfully acknowledged him to be, 3 was the 
more welcome after her disappointment a year before. There 
were others who were very far from sharing her 

Dissatisfac- , , . . ,, ......... 

tionofthe delight. 1 he birth of the infant seemed to be a 

imans. pi e( jg e o f the permanence of the existing system 

of government, even if he were not nurtured in his mother's 

1 Council Register, Nov. 24. 

2 D'Eives's Autobiography, ii. 41. After a decent interval orders we-e 
given that the catalogue should be continued in the presence of Coiton s 
son. Council Register, July 23. 

3 The Queen to Madame de St. George, Strickland's Lines of thi 

V. 252. 


faith to trouble Protestant England when he came to sit upon 
the throne. Till now there had been a prospect, however 
remote, of seeing the golden crown of England encircling the 
fair brow of Elizabeth, and it was never doubted that if 
Elizabeth took her seat upon the throne, there would he no 
place for Laud and Weston upon its steps. No wonder the 
Puritans hung their heads whilst bells were ringing and 
bonfires blazing. " God," said one, " had already better pro- 
vided for us than we had deserved in giving such a hopeful 
progeny by the Queen of Bohemia, brought up in the Reformed 
religion ; whereas it is uncertain what religion the King's 
children will follow, being to be brought up under a mother so 
devoted to the Church of Rome." l 

It was only with difficulty that Charles was induced to avoid 
emphasizing in the eyes of all men the risk which would have 
Proposal to to be faced at last. On the very day of his son's 
chiJdt'ofidy birth > he announced that the child was to be en. 
Roxburgh, trusted to the charge of the Roman Catholic Lady 
Roxburgh, who, as Jane Drummond, had been the main instru- 
ment in attaching the infant's grandmother, Queen Anne, to 
the religion which she herself professed. Although it was hard 
for Charles, at such a moment, to resist the entreaties of his 
wife, he yielded at last to the remonstrances of his ministers, 
and Lady Dorset, an Englishwoman and a Protestant, was 
finally appointed. Charles, however, continued as usual to 
mar the graciousness of concession by the coldness of his 
manner. " This king," wrote the Venetian ambassador, " is so 
constituted by nature that he never obliges anyone, either by 
word or deed." a 

To no one, except to his parents, was the birth of the heir 

more welcome than to Laud. Wentworth's attachment to 

Charles, though not without a romantic tinge, was 

uchmntto political at the bottom. Laud regarded him with the 

warmest personal affection. The two men had so 

much in common. Nor did Laud, like Wentworth, soar into 

1 Heylyn, Cyfriantts Anglicus, 198. Soranzo's despatch, June 
Yen. MSS. 

2 Soranzo's despatch, July -, Ven. MSS 


regions in which Charles was incapable of following him. He 
simply found in Charles's mind the receptive soil in which 
he might hopefully plant his ideas of external order. 
Bap U t?s e mof Laud joyfully composed a prayer commending the 
the Pnuce. ^^ ^^ ^ Q its h eaven jy Protector, 1 and on June 27 

he was called upon to baptize him by his father's name. 

At the time of the Prince's birth, Laud and Wentworth had 
as yet formed no special tie of friendship. They were brought 
Alexander together by a common dislike of subversive doctrines, 
Leighton. an( j a commO n resolution to visit with the harshest 
penalties those who spread them amongst the people. Such 
a one, at least in the eyes of courtiers and councillors, was 
Alexander Leighton. A Scot by birth, the father of the gentle 
and thoughtful student who became Archbishop of Glasgow in 
the next generation, he, after becoming a Master of Arts at 
the University of St. Andrews, at some unknown date mi- 
grated to England, and became a preacher in the diocese 
of Durham. He then moved on to London, and ultimately, 
in 1617, betook himself to Leyden, where he applied him- 
self to the study of medicine, taking in due course the 
degree of doctor in that faculty. Returning to London, he 
attempted to practise his new profession ; but was soon 
brought before the College of Physicians, charged partly with 
being a quack and partly with daring to smuggle himself into a 
profession from which his orders excluded him. He was sub- 
jected to an examination in which he failed to satisfy examiners 
who were probably not very anxious to detect his knowledge, 
and he was then interdicted from practising in England. He 
continued, however, to prescribe clandestinely, and he also re- 
verted to his clerical work, collecting around him, doubtless in 
the privacy of his own house, a considerable number 
His first of disciples. His first book, the Speculum Belli Sacri, 
was launched into the world in 1624, as an incentive 
to the declaration of war against Spain. It was chiefly distin. 

1 Racket (ii. 96) records Williams's expression of dissatisfaction with a 
phrase in this prayer, "Double his father's graces, O Lord, upon him, if it 
be possible." As printed in Laud^s Works, iii. 103, it is simply, "And 
when fulness of days must gather time, Lord, double his graces, and make 
them apparent in this his heir." 


gtiished by the furiousness of its intolerance, and by the cool 
presumption with which, supported by quotations from the 
Scriptures and the writers of Greece and Rome, he ventured to 
give dogmatic opinions on the military art. 

In 1628, after the Houses had been prorogued and the 
Remonstrance of the Commons was passing from hand to hand 

1628. to fan the flame of opposition, the enthusiasts who 
ffjJaJw** gathered at Leighton's house began to talk over plans 
Prelacy. f or carrying on the war against the prevalent eccle- 
siastical system in the coming session. Some talked of abating 
the authority of the bishops, others of various minor reforms. 
Leighton, like a true Scotchman as he was, went to the root of 
the matter. His 'opinion was right down for extirpation of the 
prelates, with all their dependencies and supporters.' This 
audacious proposal was well received, and he was requested 
to embody his views in a petition to Parliament. A draft was 
soon prepared and circulated amongst those whom Leighton 
described as the 'godliest, learnedest, and most judicious of 
the land.' Before long he had five hundred signatures to his 
petition, some of them being those of members of Parliament. 
Satisfied with the number, he crossed over to Holland, to print 
the petition without fear of interruption. In its passage through 
the press it was elaborated into a lengthy treatise, dated, ap- 
parently with the object of exciting indignation against the 
Government, 'in the year and month wherein Rochelle was 

Two early copies were sent over, to be laid before the two 
Houses when they met for their last session. The dissolution 

1629. came before they had reached those for whom they 
tind'ed for vvere intended. In the meanwhile Leighton had passed 
Parliament, through some vicissitudes. In March he was chosen 
to be preacher of the English Church in Utrecht. In less than 

three months he had come to an open breach with his 


Leighton in congregation. He dissented from some of the orders 
Holland. j,^ down for the guidance of ministers in the pro- 
vince, and he refused to preach on Christmas Day, Good Friday, 
and other similar days which the English in the Netherlands- 
Puritans as they were were accustomed to observe. Though 


his congregation dismissed him from his post, he continued to 
occupy the pulpit, till the magistrates of the city intervened, 
and forced him to forbear preaching. A few weeks later, 
finding that there was no place for him in the Netherlands, he 
returned to England, probably thinking that his work had es- 
caped notice. His book, however, though it could not be sold 
openly, was circulated in private, under the title of An Appeal 
to Parliament ; or, Stan's Plea against Prelacy. In the following 
i6 30 . February a copy fell into Laud's hands. The pur- 
Arrest' Y 7 ' suivants were at once put upon the track of the daring 
Leighton. author, and, before long, he was arrested by a warrant 
from the High Commission, and lodged, if his description is 
correct, ' in a nasty dog-hole full of rats and mice.' * 

Leighton's treatise was undoubtedly the production of a 
vigorous understanding. There is an intellectual freshness 
Character of m " ts composition which is wholly wanting in the 
his book. ponderous learning of Prynne. It is, however, the 
work of a man with a single fixed idea. Whatever evil ex- 
isted in the world was laid to the charge of the bishops, 
the antichristian and Satanical prelacy. If the season was un- 
healthy, if provisions were dear, if ladies displayed extravagance 
in dress, it was all the fault of the bishops. They had poisoned 
the ear of the late King, telling him that if he would support 
their authority he might have ' absolute liberty to do what he 
list.' They had supported Buckingham in his resistance to 
Parliaments till God cut him off. They were 'men of blood,' 
persecuting the saints, 'knobs and wens and bunchy popish 
flesh '; they were the ' trumpery of Antichrist,' by whom the 
land was filled with swearing, drunkenness, pride, idleness, and 
all kinds of sin. 

Though Leighton spoke respectfully of the King, he did 
not hesitate to wound his tenderest feelings. He described 
Buckingham as ' that great Goliath,' who had been made ' to fall 

1 The greater part of the evidence on which this narrative is based is 
collected in the introduction to Heath's speech in the Camden Miscellany, 
vol. vii. Some important corrections are due to information given me by 
Mr. James Christie. 



unexpectedly' by 'the Lord of Hosts.' Buckingham had set 'all 
things to sale, and sold the fee-simple of England to Rome, 
that he might have the tenant-right.' The King's own marriage 
was not spared. God had 'suffered him to match with the 
daughter of Heth, though he missed an Egyptian.' 

Sioris Plea was more than an ecclesiastical manifesto. It 

was an appeal to political Presbyterianism to take the sword in 

hand. " Put the case," wrote Leighton, hypothetically, 

Its political , , , , , ' ..... . , T , 

Presby- " that the good harmless King be a captivated Joash 
by Athaliah's Arminianised and Jesuitical crew, or a 
misled Henry VI., dispossessed of his faithfullest friends and 
best counsel by the pride of the French ; or a Henry III., over- 
awed by a devilish domineering favourite ; or an Edward VI., 
overpoised and borne down from his good purposes to God's 
glory and the good of the State by the halting and falsehood 
of the prelates and their Romish confederacies, so that such a 
king, though he hold the sceptre, neither can be free himself 
nor execute his designs, because the sons of the man of sin are 
too hard for him." J 

Leighton did not shrink from calling upon Parliament to 
take up the work which had been left undone by the King. 
Leighton " Then," he said, addressing the two Houses, which 
Parliament *hc book contemplated as still in session, " you, the 
to interfere, great Council of State, must remove the wicked from 
the head, and take away the corrupting and corroding dross 
from the silver excellency and excellent argentry 2 of the King. 
. . . Strike neither at great nor small, but at these troublers 
of Israel. Smite that Hazael in the fifth rib." 3 The words were 
no doubt intended to be taken metaphorically, but they were 
easily capable of another interpretation. 

Leighton ended his book with a deliberate invitation to 
Parliament to resist a dissolution. Its members, he argued, 
and to resist were bound to stay in the ship. " Every dissolution 
a dissolution. o f Parliament without real information is against 
right, reason, and record." 4 This long indictment of Royalty and 

1 Stan's Plea, p. 207. * " ingentrie " as printed. 

* Sim's Plea, p. 2*0. ^ * Ibid. 337. 


Episcopacy was brought to a close with the following suggestive 
lines : 

' High must you soar, but glory gives thee wings, 

No low attempt a starlike glory brings.' ' 

The invitation to Parliament to constitute itself into a per- 
manent body was naturally regarded by the Government as an 
invitation to revolution. The Attorney-General, as 

Did Leigh- -,11 

ton stand might have been expected, was anxious to know 
whether Leighton stood alone. He lavished all his 
powers of persuasion to draw from him the names of those five 
hundred persons who had signed the petition. It was all in 
vain. No offers of forgiveness or liberty could draw a single 
name from Leighton's lips. The form of his book he distinctly 
asserted to be entirely his own. 2 

At the present day Leighton's attack would doubtless be 

left to the contemptuous indifference of all sensible men. But 

the conduct which commends itself to a Government 

June 4. 

Proceedings so strong as to defy treason to do its worst is hardly 
fifthe'staT to be expected from a Government conscious of weak- 
Chamber. ness> Leighton's attack came too near Eliot's attack 
to be treated as an isolated occurrence. Unhappily, the con- 
templation of the danger was not likely to be accompanied by 
any profitable reflections. That the House of Commons, so 
loyal and submissive to Elizabeth, should have raised a thinly 
disguised demand for supremacy in the State ; that the 
forcible introduction of Presbyterianism should be regarded 
as anything more than a dream ; were surely phenomena 
to induce the King and his counsellors to ask themselves 
what they had done to make such things possible. No 
such thought, however, passed through their minds for an 
His sen- instant. All that was thought of was to crush a 
tence. fanatic who could only be dangerous through their 

own maladministration. The Court of Star Chamber was called 
upon to punish his offence. The two Chief Justices, in their 

1 Stan's Flea, 344. I do not understand why former inquirers have 
failed to discover most of the passages here quoted. 

2 Leighton's Answer, Sloane MSS. 41. 

I. 2 


place in that court, declared that if the King had so pleased, 
Leighton might have been put on his trial for high treason, 
and some of the Privy Councillors assured him that ' it was his 
Majesty's exceeding mercy and goodness' which had brought 
him there. In order to show his Majesty's mercy and good- 
ness, Leighton was condemned to pay a fine of 10,000!., to be 
set in the pillory at Westminster, and there whipped, and after 
his whipping to ' have one of his ears cut off and his nose slit, 
and be branded in the face with SS, for a sower of sedition.' At 
some future time he was' to be taken to the pillory at Cheapside. 
The lash was again to descend upon his back, his other ear was 
to be sliced off, and he was then to be imprisoned for life, 
' unless his Majesty shall be graciously pleased to enlarge him.' 
It is not probable that any one of the judges expected 
Leighton to pay a hundredth part of the line which had been 
set upon him. In truth the enormous fines which have left 
such a mark upon the history of this reign were seldom ex- 
acted, and became little more than a conventional mode in 
which the judges expressed their horror of the offence, 1 except 
so far as they may have been intended to bring the offender to 
an early confession of his fault. The rest of Leighton's sen T 
tence, however, was far from nominal. In its treatment of 
criminals, the age was hard and brutal. The constant pass- 
ing of the death-cart along the road to Tyburn raised no 

1 Every individual payment of the fines is set down in the Receipt Books 
of the Exchequer. The only question is whether those not there mentioned 
were paid underhand. I think if this had been the case we should have 
heard something of it. There is, moreover, one instance in which, if ever,' 
concealment would have been maintained. When the heavy fine of 7o,ooo/. 
was set on the City of London in 1635, nothing was heard of any payment 
for some time. In 1638, however, there is a pardon for the whole sum 
(fat. Rolls, 14 Charles I., Part 14). About the same time the Receipt, 
Books (June 29) show a payment of I2,ooo/. from the City. The explana- 
tion is found in a Privy Seal of April 23 of the same year (Chapter House 
Records), in which the King states that he had promised the Queen lo,ooo/. 
out of this fine, and that he thought fit to make it I2,ooc/. Surely if the 
Queen's grant passed through the Exchequer, money given to inferior 
persons would ha% r e been dealt with in the same way. See, however, 
Alington's case at p. 251. 


compunction in the minds of Londoners. The pillory, with 
its accompanying brandings and mutilation, was an ordinary 
penalty known to the law, and there was nothing in Leigh- 
ton's sentence which was not authorised by the practice of 
the Court of Star Chamber. 1 What was new was 

Changed u 

position of that the members of the court were now virtually 

the court. . . , ,. , , , . 

parties m the case. 1 hey had a personal interest 
in avenging an insult directed against themselves. If this 
was true of the judges and the temporal lords, it was still 
more true of the bishops. If Leigh ton's account of the pro- 
ceedings, given many years afterwards, when his temper was 
soured by cruel sufferings, is to be accepted as at all ap- 
proaching to accuracy, the bishops took a leading part in in- 
sisting upon the heaviest sentence. Neile opposed the theory 
of the divine right of Episcopacy to Leighton's theory of the 
divine right of Presbytery. He had his calling, he said, ' from 
the Holy Ghost. If he could not make it good, he would 

1 Hudson's Treatise on the Star Chamber, being written in James's 
reign, is good evidence of past practice on this point, as well as on the 
point of the fines. " The punishment," he writes, " is by fine, imprison- 
ment, loss of ears, or nailing to the pillory, slitting the nose, branding the 
forehead, whipping ; of late days, wearing of papers in public places, or 
any punishment but death. 

" Fines are now of late imposed secnnduni qtiantilatem delicti ; and not 
fitted to the estate of the person, so that they are rather in terror em populi 
than for the true end for which they were intended when fine and ransom 
was appointed ; the ransom of a beggar and a gentleman being all one, 
to the loss of the Crown and the great detriment of the Commonwealth. 

" Imprisonment always accompanieth a fine, for if the party be fined 
he must be imprisoned, and there remain until he find security to pay his 
fine, and then must pay his fee to the Warden of the Fleet. 

"Loss of ears is the punishment inflicted upon perjured persons, in- 
famous libellers, scandalers of the State, and such like. 

" Branding in the face and slitting the nose is inflicted upon forgers of 
false deeds, conspirators to take away the life of innocents, false scandals 
upon the great, judges, and justice of the realm. 

" Whipping hath been used at the punishment ,in great deceipts and 
unnatural offences, as the wife against the husband, but never constantly 
observed in any case but where a clamorous person in forma panperis pro- 
secutcth another falsely, and is not able to pay him his cost. Then, quod 
non habet in are, hut in corpore." 


fling his rochet and all the rest from his back.' 1 Laud's 
speech lasted for two hours. " Until the time of Luther, 
Calvin, and Beza," he said, " the world heard not of any other 
government of the Church but by bishops, and although Cal- 
vin and Beza did abjure bishops and their government, yet he 
found them to be more proud and imperious in their govern- 
ment than any bishops in England." 2 According to the same 
authority, as soon as judgment had been delivered, Laud took 
off his cap, and raising his hands, ' gave thanks to God who 
had given him the victory over his enemies.' 3 

Whether this last anecdote be true or false, it illustrates the 
position into which Laud had come. He looked upon those 
who opposed his opinions as his enemies, and upon his enemies 
as the enemies of God. 

Before the terrible sentence could be carried out Leighton 
was to be degraded from his ministerial office by the High 
Leighton to Commission, in order that he might not appear in 
be degraded. ^is c i er j ca i character in the pillory. As the High 
Commission was not then sitting, an effort was vainly made in 
the course of the vacation to extract from him the names of his 
supporters. Leighton was, however, of the stuff of which mar- 
tyrs are made. Introduced before the Commission at 

Nov. 4. / 

Hisdegrada- last, he refused to take off his hat to the court, and 
declared defiantly that it had no authority to touch 
him. Leighton's clerical dress was stripped from his back, and 
he was sent back to prison to prepare for suffering. 4 The King, it 
is said, was meditating the remission of his corporar punishment, 5 

1 Leighton's Epitome, 75. 

1 Ibid. 70. Leighton, however, does not seem to have been present at 
this part of the proceedings, as he says, ' I have set down his own words as 
they were related unto me,' p. 73, misnumbered 65. 

1 Ibid. 78. The part of Laud's speech given above seems just what he 
would have said. Other things attributed to him seem unlikely, and the 
story of raising the cap may have been invented or distorted. This book 
of Leighton's seems to have been entirely overlooked. 

4 Leighton's Epitome^ 83. Meade to Stuteville, Nov. 27, Court and 
Times, ii. 79. >., 

* " For, at the censuring of those that helped him to escape, some of 
the Lords said that, had he not made an escape, his Majesty was graciously 


when on the night before the day fixed for his appearance in the 
Nov. 9. pillory he contrived to make his escape from prison 
i!idr^ ape w ^ tn tne a id of two of his countrymen named 
capture. Livingston and Anderson. A fortnight afterwards 
he was captured in Bedfordshire. His flight put an end to all 
NOV 26 thoughts of mercy. Leighton went bravely to his suf- 
His punish- fering, together with two other culprits who had in 
some way offended against the law. His wife walked 
before him as if in some triumphal procession. " As Christ," 
she said, " was crucified between two thieves, so is my husband 
led between two knaves." His own courage did not fail him. 
" All the arguments brought against me," he said to the spec- 
tators, "are prison, fijie, brands, knife, and whip." " This is 
Christ's yoke," he cried, as his neck was thrust into the pillory. 
Then, as the sharp knife of the executioner rent away his ear, 
he exclaimed, " Blessed be God, if I had a hundred, I would lose 
them all for the cause." But in the opinion of some he marred 
the simple dignity of these words by others which trenched 
upon profanity. ' He told the people he suffered for their sins ; 
and out of the Psalms and Isaiah applied unto himself the pro- 
phecies of Christ's sufferings, to the great scandal of many.' l 

Leighton was carried back bleeding and fainting to his 
prison, there to endure long years of misery. The second 
Part of it agony at the Cheapside pillory was spared him. One 
remitted. ear was j e f t vmcropped ; one scourging was not in- 
flicted. So far the mercy of Charles extended. 2 

There is no evidence that Leighton met with anything like 
general sympathy. He had his followers, no doubt, who re- 
How far was garded him as a martyr for the truth; but nothing is 
he popular? h ear( } o f an y popular movement in his favour round 
the pillory at Westminster. At the Inns of Court, when search 

inclined to have pardoned all his corporal punishments." Meade to Stute- 
ville, Dec. 5, ibid. ii. 82. ' Ibid. 

2 The infliction of the second part of the sentence is noticed only in the 
forged entry in Laud's diary (Rushwortk, ii. 57). It is conclusive against 
it that Leighton says nothing of it in the Epitome. The. sentence had not 
been executed when Meade's letter of Dec. 5 was wiitten. Court anti 
Times, ii. 82. Mr. Christie has referred me, in corroboration of my view, 
to Granger's Biog. Hist. 614, p. 2L 


was made for him at the time of his escape, the lawyers ' took 
it unkindly that they should be suspected for Puritans.' * It 
may well be doubted whether the feeling of opposition had as 
yet reached below the political classes. Even amongst them 
Leighton's subversive Presbyterianism could have found but 
few defenders. It required many years of misgovernment to 
convert dissatisfaction with particular acts of the King and the 
bishops into the torrent of revolutionary abhorrence which was 
to sweep away King and bishops together. 

It has been said, and it is by no means improbable, that 
Leighton's denunciations were the means of drawing Laud 
Laud and an( ^ Wentworth into close communication with one 
Wentworth ano ther. 2 To them at least they would contain the 
same lesson of warning. Presbyterianism in the Church and 
Parliamentarism in the State would seem to be two forms of 
one disease of the error which sought to control the govern- 
ment of the wise few by the voice of the ignorant many. 

Governments do themselves little direct harm by the punish- 
ment which they inflict upon violent and unreasonable oppo- 
nents. Indirectly, the temper which encourages harsh and 
extreme repression leads to an unwise antagonism to the mode- 
rate demands of those who are neither violent nor fanatical. 
Charles might long have treated the claims of the House of 
Commons with contempt, and might long have bidden defiance 
to Presbyterian enthusiasts, if he could have understood how 
to make use of the higher devotional tendencies of the Puritan- 
ism of his day. It was of no good omen for the State that by 
choice or by compulsion men who would have added strength 
to any Government stood aside from participation in public 
duties, and that some even sought elsewhere than in England 

1 Meade to Stuteville, Nov. 27, Court and Times, ii. 79. 

2 Leighton, in his Epitome, says that 'a man of eminent quality told 
me that the book and my sufferings did occasion their combination ; for the 
prelate seeing that the book struck at the root and branch of the hierarchy, 
and Stratford perceiving that the support and defence of the hierarchy would 
make him great, they struck a league, like sun and moon to govern day 
and night, religion and state.' He also says that in the Star Chamber 
Wentworth ' used many violent and virulent expressions against ' him. 

1629 JOHN WINTHROP. 153 

for homer, in which they might pass the remainder of their lives 
in peace. 

Foremost amongst these latter was John Winthrop. Sprung 
from an ancient family which had enriched itself by trade, and 
John win- Dorn at Groton in Suffolk in 1588, he had grown up 
thiop. under the influence of the tide of Protestantism 

which swept over the nation in the years of triumph which 
followed upon the ruin of the Armada, and was nowhere so 
strongly felt as in the eastern counties. His sensitive mind was 
early racked by the agonies of religious despondency. Self- 
examination, leading to self-condemnation, became the habit 
of his daily life, albeit it was chequered by intervals of calm 
refreshment in the remembrance of his Saviour's mercies. He 
had 'an insatiable thirst after the word of God,' so as never 
willingly ' to miss a good sermon, though many miles off, espe- 
cially of such as did search deep into the conscience.' ] 

To Winthrop the God whom he worshipped seemed to be 
very near, an invisible presence detecting and bringing to light 
his faults, and even saving him from bodily harm in the occur- 
rences of daily life, 'crossing him in his delights,' if he fell into 
idleness, or revealing to his wife a spider in the children's 
porridge. 2 For many years the consciousness of being unworthy 
of such favour gave rise to a morbid feeling. He could not 
attend the sessions as justice of the peace without dreading 
lest he should be entangled in the vanities of the world, or 
without thinking with self-conscious shyness of the smiles which 
rose to the lips of his gayer neighbours as they glanced at his 
plain and unadorned dress. 

Domestic trouble came to add its depressing influence. 
Married at eighteen to an illiterate wife four years older than 
himself, he accepted his lot without repining ; but there was 
no intensity of love, no tenderness of feeling to soften the 
rigours of his life. When his wife died, after eleven years of 
wedlock, she had borne him six children. He quickly married 

1 \Vinthrop' s Life of John Winthrop, i. 6 1. 

* A spider, it should be remembered, was believed to be poisonous. 
Winter's Tale, ii. I. 


again, but it was only to lay his second wife in the grave, after 
a brief year of happiness. In his third wife, Margaret Tyndal, 
he found his mate ; she it was who made him what he now 
became. From the day that his faith was plighted to her, 
nothing more was heard of the old moodiness and 
His third timidity. He learned to step boldly out amongst his 

nage ' equals, to take his share in the world's work. He 
became a practising attorney in the Court of Wards, and in his 
letters of this period there is nothing to distinguish him from 
any other God-fearing Puritan of the time, excepting the almost 
feminine tenderness and sensitiveness of his disposition. 1 

To this stage of Winthrop's life the dissolution of Parlia- 
ment in 1629 sounded the death-knell. There was no prone- 

, 629 . ness to despondency in his own religion ; but as he 
Determines looked around him he despaired of his native country. 

to go to New . .11 .-,1 

England. Evil times were coming, when the Church must ' fly 
to the wilderness.' Where Eliot saw a passing sickness, Win- 
throp's softer nature turned sadly from the symptoms of mortal 
disease. Population, he thought, was overtaking the means of 
subsistence. The rich were vying with one another in sumptu- 
ousness of dress and fare. At the universities men had learned 
to 'strain at gnats and swallow camels," to ' use all severity for 
the maintenance of caps,' but to 'suffer all ruffian-like fashions 
and disorders in manners to pass uncontrolled.' Winthrop 
resolved to seek in New England the congenial home which 
Old England could not afford him. 8 

Though emigration to New England was no longer the 

1 It is only by inference that the evident change can be connected with 
Winthrop's marriage. He says {Life, ii. 171) : "I was about thirty years 
of age, and now was the time come that the Lord would reveal Christ unto 
me. I could now no more look at what I had been, or what I had done, 
nor be discontented for want of strength or assurance ; mine eyes were only 
upon his free mercy in Jesus Christ. 1 ' Winthrop was thirty on January 22, 
1. 6 1 8. His father, writing on March 31, speaks of the marriage as already 
arranged. I am responsible for this and other conclusions on Winthrop's 
character, but they are based on the facts as narrated in the Life, the memo- 
rial which has been raised by the devotion of the Hon. R. C. Winthrop to 
illustrate the deeds of his ancestor. 

* Reasons to be considered, Life, \. 300 


service of danger which it had been when Bradford and 
StateofNew Brewster crossed the Atlantic in the 'Mayflower,' it 
England. was s tj}i a W ork demanding endurance of hardship. 
The Plymouth colony had succeeded in establishing its footing, 
and other exiles had come out in scanty numbers to settle here 
and there upon the neighbouring coast. Few Englishmen were 
tempted to leave their native land for a home in the wilderness,' 
and of those who tried the experiment many succumbed to the 
difficulties of the undertaking. 

It was time that a fresh stream of English emigration should 

be directed to the coasts of America. The Dutch had already 

erected Fort Amsterdam at the mouth of the Hudson, 

Settlements . . . . , . , .. . . 

of the Dutch on the island which was afterwards to bear the great 
and French. commercial c j ty of New Y ork. The French had 

settled at Port Royal in Nova Scotia, and had established a 
trading post for the purchase of furs from the Indians at 
Quebec. Though Sir William Alexander claimed the whole 
district under a grant from the Crown, and his emissary, 
Captain Kirk, had seized Port Royal and stormed Quebec> 
negotiations were already on foot in Europe for the restoration 
of the French settlers. 

Religious enthusiasm was to secure the preponderance on 
the continent for men of English race. At the close of 1628 

ig2g about fifty or sixty persons had formed a settlement 
Settlement at Salem in Massachusetts Bay under authority of a 
company in London which had received a grant of 
lands from the Council for New England. In the following 
year fresh members were admitted to the company ; and on 
March 4, two days after the Speaker had been held down in 
his chair by Holies and Valentine, it was reconstituted by 
The Com- royal charter, under the name of the ' Company of 
sacCsetu*" the Massachusetts Bay in New England.' ' About 
Ba y- two hundred persons were despatched in April, and 

Charlestown rose by the side of Salem. They carried with 
them two clergymen who were dissatisfied with the state of 
things in England, and they immediately on their arrival con- 
stituted themselves into a church after the Separatist model. 
Bradford came over from Plymouth to offer them the right 


hand of fellowship. "That which is our greatest comfort," 
wrote one of them, " is that we have here the true religion and 
holy ordinances of Almighty God taught among us. Thanks 
be to God, we have here plenty of preaching and diligent 
catechizing, with strict and careful exercise, and good and 
commendable orders to bring our people into a Christian con 

In setting up their worship these men had no idea of ad- 
mitting the principle of toleration. Two brothers who attempted 
Toleration to worship apart, using the English Common Prayer, 
not allowed. were at once pi ace( j on board ship and sent back 

across the Atlantic. It may be that the rulers of the little 
community were wise in their resolution. Their own religious 
liberty would have been in danger if a population had grown up 
around them ready to offer a helping hand to any repressive 
measures of the home government. 

It was in this settlement that Winthrop proposed to find his 
new home ; but neither he nor those who were ready to join 

July 28. him were willing to go if they were to be merely the 
^Massa* subjects of a trading company in London liable to be 
ColTan to cont i"olled by the King. An unexpected way was 
America. found to meet the difficulty. On July 28, Cradock, 
the governor of the company, proposed that the government of 
the corporation should be transferred to America, 'for the ad- 
vancement of the plantation, the inducing and encouraging 
persons of worth and quality to transplant themselves and 
families thither.' He did not say, what he must have been 
clearly understood to mean, that in this way the King would 
have some difficulty in laying his hand upon the governor. On 

Aug. 26. August 26 Winthrop and eleven other gentlemen 
agreestT signed an agreement to emigrate if this condition 
emigrate. were fulfilled. Two days later the transference was 
voted by the company, and on October 20 Winthrop was 
elected governor in Cradock's place. 

, 630< In April, 1630, W'inthrop was on his way to Mas- 

Wmthrop sachusetts. His name was a powerful magnet to draw 
s"' 5 - his friends and neighbours to associate their fortunes 

with his own. Either in the fleet in which he sailed or in vessels 


which shortly followed, a thousand persons were added to 
the struggling settlements on the New England coast. l It was 
Hisprin- not tne l ve f democratic equality which led these 
dpies. men man y o f them gentlemen of wealth and posi- 

tion to wrestle with the hardships of an unkindly soil, and 
of a harsh and rigorous climate. If they had their share with 
Bradford and Brewster and Winslow as the founders of a nation, 
it was because temporal blessings were added to them who 
first sought the Lord and his righteousness. They had set 
an ideal before them which they strove to realise upon earth; 
and in spite of human shortcomings in its conception, and of 
human errors in its embodiment in action, their lives and the 
lives of those around them were ennobled by their high spiritual 
earnestness. The old world, they believed, was growing very 
old, falling swiftly into corruption and decay. The immoralities 
around them, they thought, would be strengthened, not weak- 
ened, by the ecclesiastical ceremonialism which was in favour 
in high places in England. Winthrop believed thoroughly in 
the Calvinistic system of theology; but for him, as for every 
noble nature, that theology was clothed in the heartfelt appre- 
ciation of the personal nearness of his Saviour. It was this 
which to him and to so many others rendered a ceremonial 
worship so hateful. It was a mere distraction from the burn- 
ing self-sustained passion of devotion. All that was needed 
to impose a check upon the intense individuality of his creed 
he found in the study of the Scriptures, in which he recognised 
the voice of his heavenly guide. To such a soul, hungering and 
thirsting after righteousness, the Bible was a code of moral law 
perfect and complete. Earthly life, as those Massachusetts 
settlers held, was to be the expression of the heavenly life. 
Church By their charter, which they carried with them to 
aliTpoHticai America, the members of the company who formed 
rights. the governing body had been empowered to admit 

freemen to share in their privileges, and they used this power 
to establish a commonwealth into which none were to enter as 
masters who did not fully share in the religious conceptions of 

1 Life of Winthrop, \. 30?. Palfrey, Hist, of New England^ I 28^. 


the existing members. "The only way," wrote Winthrop, " to 
avoid shipwreck is to do justly, to love mercy, to walk humbly 
with our God." l Church membership was declared to be the 
indispensable condition of admission to the governing body. 
A religious oligarchy was thereby established, around which 
gathered hundreds of persons who were unable or unwilling to 
satisfy the test imposed. But for the mingled firmness and 
gentleness of the rulers, such an arrangement could not have 
lasted for a month. The year after Winthrop's arrival only 126 
freemen were admitted, and it took ten years of immigration 
and selection to add 1,200 more. 2 

Massachusetts was not a place where men might do as they 
liked. Those who gave signs of proving troublesome to the 
l63 , colony were simply placed on shipboard and sent 
Severe rule. Dac k to England. Those who were guilty in any 
special way were condemned to harsher penalties. A quack 
doctor was fined 5/. Captain Stone, for assaulting a member 
of the community 'and calling him a just ass,' was fined ioo/. 
and banished. Edward Palmer, who made the Boston stocks 
and charged too highly for the wood, had to sit in them him- 
self. Swearers had to stand with their tongues fixed in cleft 
Sticks. Philip Ratcliff, the Leighton of the colony, was ordered 
to 'be whipped, have his ears cut off, fined 4o/., and banished' 
out of the limits of the 'jurisdiction,' for uttering malicious and 
scandalous speeches against the government. 3 

In proportion as the student of the history of the seven- 
teenth century perceives clearly that religious toleration was 
Toleration tne S oa ^ to which it was tending, and that in it alone 
rejected. could its difficulties find their appropriate solution, 
he is tempted to think harshly and bitterly of those men who 
turned their backs upon such a benefit. Eliot and Winthrop 
would hear as little of it as Laud and Wentworth. Even the 
intellectual perception of the value of toleration had not yet 
dawned upon the world. The obstacle was, however, not purely 
intellectual. The real difficulty was to know who was to begin. 
The problem as it presented itself to the men of that generar 

1 Life of Winthrop, ii. 18. 
- * Louell Institute Lectures, 237. Ibid. 86. 


lion was not whether they were to tolerate others, but whether 
they were to give to others the opportunity of being intolerant 
lo themselves. Was Laud to allow Leighton to gather strength 
to sweep away the whole Church system of England? Was 
Winthrop to allow the dissidents to gather strength to sweep 
away the whole Church system of New England? It is only 
when a sentiment of mutual forbearance has sprung up which 
renders it improbable that the spread of any given opinion will 
be used to repress other opinions by force, that the principle of 
toleration can possibly commend itself to a wise people. .Even 
in these days we are tolerant because we believe that freedom 
of thought, besides being a good thing in itself, is not likely to 
be turned against ourselves ; not because we feel bound in 
principle to give to the holders of one particular doctrine a 
chance of establishing their own authority on the ruins of the rest. 
It was the glory of England that she had approached more 
nearly than other nations to the condition of mutual forbear- 
The church ance which renders toleration possible. It was the 
of England, misfortune of the reign of Charles I. that the tacit 
compact between the two great parties in the Church was 
broken. The Puritan demanded exact conformity with the doc- 
trine which he professed. Laud demanded exact conformity 
with the practices of which he approved. The largeness of 
view, the power of concession, the recollection on the one hand 
that personal and individual religion need not throw off regard 
for the demands of external authority and ceremonial, and. on 
the other hand, that the devotees of external authority and 
ceremonial need not reject the demands of personal and in- 
dividual religion, were being lost sight of. Each party was 
coming to look upon the other as something to be repressed 
and extirpated. Yet each party regarded itself, not without 
excuse, as standing on the defensive. Winthrop explained his 
refusal of the use of the Common Prayer-book by calling to 
mind the persecution to which the emigrants had been sub- 
jected in England. Cosin preached on the text, " Pray for the 
Cosin's peace of Jerusalem." " Those other men," he said, 
sermon. have but little to do, it seems, who are rinding fault 
with the public prayers of the Church when, according to the 


prophet's rule here, we pray for the continuance of our peace, 
and desire to be kept from battle and persecution. . . . 
' Pray for the peace of Jerusalem,' saith the prophet here ; pray 
that you may live a peaceable and a godly life under your king, 
saith St. Paul. No ; pray for no peace, pray not against any 
battle, saith our Puritan, directly against the text ; and for so 
saying, let us ever think what spirit governs the sect, we shall 
be sure to find that it is none of the Spirit of peace. They are 
all for contentions and brabbles, both at home and abroad, and 
He everywhere against them, as we also ought to be." l 

The tendency of these words is unmistakable. To Cosin 
disputatiousness was not. the mere waste thrown off in the pro- 
cess of maintaining intellectual vigour. It was a sheer evil, 
without any compensating good whatever, from which it was 
the duty of the governors to protect the helpless mass of the 
population. Something of the same idea lies at the root of the 
ac.tion of the Privy Council in social matters. It would be a 
Wentwonhin great mistake to attribute to Wentworth at this time 
the Council, anything like the influence which he subsequently 
acquired. In the general direction of the Government he had, 
as far as we know, no hand whatever, and his name was not 
even thought worthy of mention by those who chronicled the 
doings of the King and his ministers. Yet it can hardly be by 
accident that his accession to the Privy Council was followed 
by a series of measures aiming at the benefit of the people in 
general, and at the protection of the helpless against the pres- 
sure caused by the self-interest of particular classes. No doubt 
much was done which in later days would be regarded as 
injudicious ; but there can be no doubt of the existence of 
a tendency to find a sphere of action in the pursuance of the 
common good. 

The aid of the Council was first invoked by a visitation 

March against which the science of that age afforded little 
The plague or no protection. The plague, which had committed 

England. suc k devastations in 1625, reappeared in England 
in the spring of i63o. 2 The Council sounded the alarm. 

1 Sermon vii., Cosin 's Works, i. 115. 

2 Meade to Stuteville, March 20, Court and Times, ii. 68. 


Magistrates were ordered to stop the passage of rogues and 
A ni 2 vagabonds who might carry the infection. Houses 
Measures in which the disease already prevailed were to be 
closed. Householders were to refuse relief to wan- 
dering beggars, and to cause them to be apprehended by the 
nearest constable. On the other hand, the deserving poor 
were to be protected against want and suffering, and the laws 
on their behalf were to be strictly put in force. 1 

Three months later an attempt was made to deal with 

the evil in London, where its consequences were most to be 

T . dreaded. There is no doubt that our forefathers were 

July 24. 

prociama- indebted for the existence of this as well as of other 
newbutid- 5 forms of disease to the overcrowded habitations 
in which they dwelt, and to the neglect of the most 
elementary sanitary precautions. In such a city as London, 
growing from year to year, it seemed hopeless to cope with the 
evil in any other way than by strictly controlling the influx of 
population to the city. An Act of Parliament in Elizabeth's 
reign had prohibited the building of new houses, and the recep- 
tion of an increased number of lodgers in the old ones, but it 
had been passed for a limited period of seven years, and when 
the term came to an end it had not been renewed. In James's 
reign, however, the same difficulty had been felt. Recourse 
had been had to the judges, who had declared that the excessive 
building of houses was illegal as a nuisance, and could therefore 
be dealt with whether the Act of Parliament were renewed or 
not. 2 James had accordingly proceeded to execute the powers 
thus acknowledged to be his, and Charles followed in his 
father's steps. All previous orders on the subject were rein- 
forced by a fresh proclamation not long after the outbreak of 
the plague. Injurious as the intervention was, there is no 
reason to doubt that it was well intended, and the prohibitions 
against building new rooms under a certain height, and against 

1 Proclamation, April 23, Rymer, xix. 1 60. 

* "About 6 Jacobi the judges resolved in the Star Chamber and de- 
clared that these buildings were nuisances and against the law." Notes in 
the hand of Secretary Coke, February (?) 1632, S. P. Dom. ccxi. 92. 


erecting houses with the upper storeys overhanging the streets 
deserve unqualified praise. 1 

This time the pestilence was accompanied by an extraor- 
dinary drought which caused a failure in the harvest. As early 

as in June the alarm was taken, and the exportation 

Measures to of corn was prohibited. 2 In September a proclama- 

mme ' tion was issued which sounds strange at the present 

day. The observance of Lent and other special days by absti- 

mber nence from meat had been a practice handed down 

Lent to be from the mediaeval Church. Elizabeth's Parliaments 

had sought to find an economical basis for that 
which had ceased to be acknowledged by most persons as 
a religious duty, and had enjoined abstention from meat at 
those seasons as a means of encouraging the fisheries. The 
Elizabethan statutes, with some alteration in details, had been 
re-enacted in the last Parliament of Charles, and the procla- 
mation which now demanded the observance of the law only 
carried out the views which had been accepted by that House 
of Commons which had risen up in indignation against Laud 
and Weston. The fast, as was stated in the proclamation, was 
observed in his Majesty's household, in the houses of the 
greater part of the nobility, at the Inns of Court, and at the 
Universities ; but it was treated with contempt at taverns and 
other places of entertainment. More meat was eaten there on 
fasting nights than on any other day. Private persons were 
therefore to be admonished to use abstinence, and the City 
companies to suspend their festivities, devoting the money thus 
saved to the starving poor, unless they wished the King ' to 
remember the hardness of their hearts.' 3 

More direct measures were taken at the same time. The 
Lord Mayor and Aldermen were ordered to prevent the price 
of corn from rising in the London market. Directions were 
sent to Ireland, which had not been reached by the dearth, to 
transmit to England all the grain which was not absolutely 
required to meet the wants of its own population. Justices of 

1 Proclamation, July 24, Rymer, xix. 177. 

* Proclamation, June 13, ibid, xix. 175. 

* Proclamation, September 28, ibid. xix. 116, 195. 


the peace in counties where corn was by any accident plentiful 
were to supply the wants of less fortunate neighbourhoods. No 
one was to venture to ask more than seven shillings a bushel 
for wheat, about two shillings more than the highest ordinary 
price, nor was more than a limited quantity to be purchased, 
or the storing of grain permitted for re-sale. It was not in the 
nature of things that such directions should be submitted to 
without opposition. Again and again the Council complained 
of resistance. In spite of threats, corn was held back from the 
market, arid prices continued to rise. Justices had to be re- 
minded that it was their duty to visit the markets week by week. 
Starchmakers had to be reminded that their work was not 
absolutely necessary to human existence. Maltsters were told 
to limit the quantity of barley consumed by them. In some 
places there were riots and disturbances, but on the whole 
order was maintained. Fortunately the next harvest proved to 
be a good one, and in the summer of 1631 prices fell as rapidly 
as they had risen. l 

It was perhaps the experience gained in this struggle with 
famine which suggested to the Council the propriety of more 
Dec. 3 i. permanent intervention on behalf of the poor. Bank- 
Commission ru p(- debtors are never likely to meet with much pity 

for the relief ' F**t 

oi debtors, from the prosperous tradesman, and it had been 
one of the charges against Bacon before his fall, that he had 
been inclined to stretch his authority in their favour. A body 
of commissioners was now appointed to mediate with the 
creditors of prisoners whose debts were under zoo/., and whose 
cases were reported by the judge by whom they had been 
committed as worthy of commiseration. The mediation of 
Privy Councillors would be apt to express itself in language 
difficult to resist, and was sure to be regarded by the creditors 
as an attack upon their legal rights. "What care I," said one 
who was summoned to give account of his harshness, " for the 
King or his Commissioners, for they have no power to give 
away my debt ? . . . Unless the commission be confirmed 
by Act of Parliament, I will go when I list and come when I 

The whole course of the proceedings can be traced in the Council Register* 

M 2 


list, nor never a messenger in England shall make me come but 
when I list." l 

Still more sweeping was the appointment of commissioners 

to see that the laws for the relief of the poor were duly carried 

j an> 5 _ out. The country justices of the peace were charged, 

Commission doubtless with truth in many instances, with neglect- 

for the relief * 

of the poor, ing their duties where their interests were concerned. 
Few, it was said, dared complain of the great landowners of 
their neighbourhood. ' Poor people ' had once been better re- 
lieved than now they were. Such abuses were to continue no 
longer. Money bequeathed for charitable uses was to be applied 
to the purposes for which it had been given. Rogues and vaga- 
bonds were to be punished, alehouses to be kept in good order, 
children without visible means of subsistence to be put out as 
apprentices, and those who had fallen into distress to be pro- 
vided with support. The justices were ordered to report from 
time to time the result of their labours ; and in this way a check 
was put upon the tendency of the local powers to slacken in 
their efforts for the public good. 2 

Such measures on the part of the Government may serve 
as an indication that there were some at least in the Council 
who, in their quarrel with the aristocracy, were anxious to fall 
back upon an alliance with the people. It was hardly likely that 
their good deeds in this direction would weigh very heavily in 
the balance. When the whole state of society is rotten, when 
the upper classes use the superiority of their position freely for 
oppression, a Government may deservedly rise to power by sub- 
stituting the despotism of one for the tyranny of many. Such 
had been the cause of the extraordinary powers acquired by the 
Tudor sovereigns at the beginning of the sixteenth century. 
But it was only by the grossest exaggeration that anything of 
the kind could be apprehended in the reign cf Charles. If 

1 Commission, December 31, Rymer, xix. 228. Affidavit of R. 
Steevens, August 28, 1632, S. P, Dom. ccxxxi. 48. 

* Commission, January 5, Rttshw. ii. App. 82. There is a copy of the 
orders in Lord Verulam's Library, apparently printed for general circula- 
tion. The State Papers are full of the Justices' Reports as long as Charles 
maintained his authority. 


justices of the peace were sometimes ignorant or harsh, if 
country gentlemen were sometimes violent or oppressive, the 
evil was not sufficiently widely spread to call for so drastic a 
remedy. There was nothing to show that the propertied classes 
would fail as a body to respond to a demand from the Govern- 
ment that justice should be done. 

One instance had not long before occurred in which ail the 

efforts of the Government would have proved futile to avert in- 

juiy 10. justice without local co-operation. In the summer 

The Hunt- o f ^30 a new charter was granted to the borough of 


Chaner. Huntingdon. 1 A dislike of popular action prevailed 
at Court, and at the petition, it was said, of the burghers them- 
selves, the rule of the town was handed over to a mayor and 
twelve aldermen appointed for life, in the first instance by the 
King himself, and authorised to fill up all future vacancies in 
their own body. The change seems to have been made with 
Cromwell's consent, 2 and he himself was named one of the three 
justices of the peace for the borough. If, however, Cromwell 
Cromwell's did not care much for democratic theories, he was 
objections, easily moved to anger by injustice, especially by in- 
justice to the poor. He saw that under the new charter the 
aldermen might deal as they pleased with the common property 
of the borough, and in pointing out the hardship thus entailed 
upon the less prominent members of the community, he spoke 
roughly to Robert Barnard, the new mayor, who had been 
the prime instigator of the change. A complaint was quickly 
NOV. 26. carried to London, and Cromwell was summoned 
He is sum- before the Council. In the end the matter was re- 

moned before 

the Council, ferred to the arbitration of the Earl of Manchester, 
whose brother was now the owner of Hinchinbrook. Man- 
chester was not likely to be prejudiced in Cromwell's favour, 
December, but he sustained his objections in every point, and 
Hisobjec- ordered that care should be taken to guard against 
mined. the risk which he had pointed out. On the other 
hand, Cromwell acknowledged that he had ' spoken in heat 

1 Huntingdon Charter, July 10, Patent Rolls, 6 Charles I., Part ii. 

2 This seems placed beyond doubt by Dr. Beard's certificate, printed in 
the Duke of Manchester's Court and Society from Elizabeth to Anne. 


and passion,' and begged that his angry words might not he re- 
membered against him. 1 A few weeks later Cromwell withdrew 
from Huntingdon, selling his property, and renting lands near 
St. Ives. It is possible that some very prosaic motive may 
have influenced him in making the change ; but it may be that 
he found that his influence was at an end in a town the gover- 
nors of which he had successfully opposed. 

It is hardly possible for a Government to break loose from 
popular control without falling into financial difficulties. Sooner 
Financial or ^ ater ^ ' s certain to engage in enterprises the ex- 
difficuities. penses of which the nation is unwilling to meet, and 
which necessitate the imposition of taxation the levy of which 
gives rise to discontent out of all proportion to the burthen 
imposed. In Weston, however, Charles had a minister who 
would put off the evil day as long as possible. He had no fancy 
for bold and startling remedies, and would rather submit to a 
deficit than resort to new and unpopular schemes. Yet even 
Weston was unable to avoid doing something. Ever since the 
dissolution, he had been engaged in meeting the most pressing 
debts of the Crown with the help of the subsidies which had 
been voted in 1628. Still the creditors cried for more. There 
were claims arising from the expenditure of Rhe, from the ex- 
pedition of Stade, and even from the Cadiz voyage. A debt 
of 4o,ooo/. was owing to the Earl of Holland. A debt of 
42,ooo/. was owing to the Earl of Carlisle. Carlisle was put off 
with a grant of fines to be paid by persons who had encroached 
upon the King's landed property, 2 and which would bring him 
in a few hundred pounds annually for some time to come. 
Holland had to content himself with promises 3 which several 
years after remained unfulfilled. But the mass of creditors could 
not be so dealt with, and it was absolutely necessary, if Charles 
was not to acknowledge himself a bankrupt, that either Parlia- 

1 See the whole story in the Preface to Mr. Bruce 's Calendar, 1629-31, 

* Commission for Defective Titles, February 24, Rymer, xix. 123. 
The payments appear from the Receipt Books of the Excheauet. 

Inrolment of Privy Seals, April 9, No. n, p. 167. 


ment should be summoned, or that resort should be had to some 
unusual mode of obtaining money. 

Of all men Charles was the least likely to perceive the risk 

attending upon the revival of obsolete but technically legal forms 

Jan. 28. of levying money. If, however, recourse was to be 

Composition had to any such measures, the one which was actually 

for knight- J . . 

hood. adopted was probably open to fewer objections than 

any other. No lawyer doubted that the King had the right to 
summon such of his subjects as were owners of an estate worth 
4o/. a year to receive knighthood. No lawyer doubted that he 
had the right of fining them if they neglected or refused to obey 
the summons, and though this right had not been put in force 
for more than a century, it could not be said that the King was 
asking for anything illegal. The first demand was made in 
January 1630.' It was some time before those who were asked 
to pay could be convinced that Charles was in earnest. In July 
it was thought necessary to appoint commissioners 
to receive compositions. Up to Michaelmas, how- 
ever, only i3,ooo/. had been thus brought in. The judges then 
came to the aid of the Government. In August the Barons of 
the Exchequer pronounced the King's right to be unaouoteu, 
, 63I- and in the following February they overruled a series 
Feb. 7. o f special objections on points of form. Payment 
could no longer be avoided. By Michaelmas 1631, ii5,ooo/. 
had been collected, and much more was still to come. 2 

Charles was evidently determined to put in force his legal 
rights, and he doubtless persuaded himself that nothing more 
could be demanded from him than conformity to the require- 
ments of the law as interpreted by the judges. To the court 
which vindicated his right to the compositions for knighthood 
he was also indebted for a support which was at least practically 
Tonnage and sufficient to enable him to levy tonnage and pound- 
poundage. a g e< Vassall, who had refused to pay the imposition 
on currants, was told by the Court of Exchequer that in the 

1 Commission, January 28. Proclamation, July 13, Rymer, xix. 119, 
175. The King to Mildmay, August 4, S, P. Dom. clxxii. 16. Proceed- 
ings in the Exchequer, February 5, 7, Add. A/SS. 11,764, 53. 

2 Receipt Books of the Exchequer. 


preceding reign the court had decided that imposition to be 
due, and its decision was not to be departed from. 

June 5. 

Vassaii's He was therefore to pay the duty. Vassall sturdily 
replied that he would have nothing to do with the 
currants under such circumstances. ' The order did not con- 
strain him to fetch them away, and he would let them lie where 
they were.' He was at once committed to custody for contempt 
of the court ; and the judges were at last obliged to order the 
sale of the currants without the intervention of their owner. 1 
Chambers, indeed, pleaded in vain that the wide issues raised 
by his case might be brought to a hearing. His case was 
postponed from time to time, and in the end he was forced to 
pay the duties without any sptcial order of the court. 

Those who still continued to resist payment were no longer 

assured of the support of their fellow-merchants. Before the 

year 1630 came to an end, a treaty of peace was 

Genera] re- . . . . _. . , . ,.,, 

sistance dies signed with Spain. Trade revived with the cessa- 
tion of hostilities, and the mass of persons engaged 
in commerce were indisposed to hold back from the pursuit of 
wealth for the sake of a political principle. 

1 Exchequer Decrees and Orders, viii. 269, 309 b ; ix. 204 b ; \i. 466 U 

1 5$ 



ON the whole Charles's treatment of his home difficulties had 
been tolerably straightforward. He had been under no temp- 
1629. tation to act otherwise than he had done. He had 
Do^sdc"' cast u P on ^ e Judges the duty of defending his 
and foreign position, and as there was no general disposition to 

policy of 

Charles. resist their decisions he was able to maintain his 
ground without much effort of his own. 

The moment that Charles cast his eyes beyond his own, 
dominions these conditions were reversed. He could not cite 
the kings of France or Spain before the Court of Exchequer. 
He could not persuade the citizens of the Dutch Republic 
to submit the interests of their state to technical argument. 
Whatever he wanted he must achieve by wise foresight and 
by the confidence inspired by honesty of purpose and by 
readiness to postpone considerations of his own welfare to 
considerations of the general good. Nothing of the kind was 
to be expected from Charles. His knowledge of foreign 
nations was most elementary. With their aims and struggles 
he had no sympathy whatever. James had made many mis- 
takes, but at least he had a European policy. Charles had no 
European policy at all. The one thing for which he cared was 
the re-establishment of his sister in the Palatinate. His object 
was merely dynastic. How it would affect Germany, even 
how it would affect England, were questions which he never 
thought of proposing to himself. The result was what might 
have been expected Whatever tendency to duplicity was in 

1 7 o FUTILE DIPLOMACY. CH. i.xx. 

him was fostered by the effort to cajole those who had it in 
their power to give him what he required. Regarding himself 
as the one just man in the midst of angry and interested com- 
batants, he began by offering aid to one or the other, regardless 
of the intrinsic merit of the quarrel which for his own purposes 
he offered to espouse. The habit of looking out for the highest 
bidder quickly grew into the habit of making profuse and often 
contradictory offers to each bidder in turn. 

When, in the autumn of 1629, Vane started for the Hague 
and Cottington for Madrid, Charles was probably full of the 
Vane at the most beneficent designs. If he could mediate a 
Hague. peace between Spain and the Netherlands at the 
same time that he was negotiating a treaty for himself, he 
would at least be quit of the obligations of the Treaty of 
Southampton, which bound him to assist the Dutch against 
their enemies. Vane now discovered that his message of 
peace found no favour in the eyes of the Prince of Orange. 
The campaign of 1629 had been eminently successful. Wesel 
, 630 . and Hertogenbosch had fallen. When the English 
January, ambassador informed the Prince that if Charles failed 
to recover the Palatinate by his treaty with Spain, he would be 
ready to enter into a fresh agreement with the Republic on 
condition that the restitution of the Palatinate was distinctly 
provided for, Frederick Henry replied that the States would 
never consent to bind themselves to a stipulation which would 
bring them into direct collision with the Emperor. Charles 
thought it very hard that the Dutch were unwilling to run the 
risk in his sister's service. 1 

Was it likely that the chivalrous self-renunciation for which 
Charles had sought in vain in Holland would be found at 
Madrid ? When Don Carlos de Coloma arrived in 
cep^nin" England, the banqueting hall at Whitehall was 
Kngiand. crow ded with spectators, and the ruffs of the ladies 
were torn in the struggle which ensued. 2 There were, however, 
very few who gave the new ambassador a hearty welcome. The 

1 Vane to Dorchester, Nov. 20 ; The King to Vane, Jan. 5 ; Vane to 
Dorchester, Feb. 4, S. P. Holland. 

* Dorchester to Cottington, Jan. 10, S. P. Spain. 


Queen paid him no compliment, and it was only with difficulty 
that a house had been found for his reception. 1 Yet Coloma 
did not despair, as he had Weston on his side, and he knew 
that Weston's word was all-powerful with Charles. 

It was to Cottington, however, not to Coloma, that the 
business of the negotiation was entrusted. Cottington soon 
Cottington found that Olivares would make no positive engage- 
at Madrid. men t for the restitution of the Palatinate. German 
ambassadors were expected, and when they came the whole 
subject might be discussed. 2 Nothing need be done at once. 
" We well know," said the Spanish minister, " that the King 
will be contented with a promise from hence." Cottington 
had to inform his master that if he expected anything more 
decisive he had better order his return. 3 

When Charles heard of the difficulty, he was much annoyed, 

and the Queen took good care to heighten his displeasure. 

,, , One morning he sent her in jest a white hair which 

\ ebruary. J 

Charles he had discovered on his head. " Don Carlos," she 
iis^usfie . j-gpijg^ w jji gj ve y OU nianv suc h before the Em- 
peror restores the Palatinate." In spite of his disappointment, 
however, Charles ordered Cottington to await the coming of 
the ambassadors from Germany. 4 

With one diplomatist, at least, Charles was on good terms. 

When Rubens left England he received the honour of knight- 

Feb.22. hood. During his stay his brush had not been idle. 

Rubens r f he picture of Peace and War, which formed one 


land. of the glories of Charles's gallery, is the memorial 

of the painter's abode here. After wandering to the shores of 
the Mediterranean, it has once more found a fitting resting- 
place in the national collection. 5 

Between peace and war Charles had, in reality, no choice. 

1 Soranzo's despatch, j^-f , Venice MSS. 

* The Spanish Government had been urging the sending of these am- 
bassadors in order to find some means of accommodation. 1'hilip IV. to 
Aytona, July ^, 1629, Add. MSS. 28,474, fl- 184. 

' Cottington to Dorchester, Jan. 29, S. P. Spain. 

4 The King to Cottington, Feb. 14: Gerbier to CoUinyton, Feb. 17, 
Ibid. ' Sainsbury's Kubens, 147. 


It pleusoi him, however, to think that he had a choice. In 
March fresh news came from Madrid that the German 


Further ambassadors were not coming after all, and that all 
negotiation. ne g Ot i at j ons must b e carried on in the Diet which 

was expected to meet shortly at Ratisbon. At the same time 
Philip insisted that if a peace was to be treated of it must be 
treated of independently of the cession of the Palatinate. He 
would do all that lay in his power to induce the Emperor to 
take off the can. Frederick would then be capable of hold- 
ing the towns occupied by Spanish garrisons, and it might be 
hoped that the rest would follow. To this reason 
ing Charles succumbed. He would not ask for any 
promise about the Palatinate as a condition of peace, but he 
must have, for his own satisfaction, a written declaration stating 
what the King of Spain intended to propose at the Diet, and 
he must have a document conferring on him powers to mediate 
with the Dutch. Whatever firmness still remained in Charles's 
mind was explained away by Weston. The Lord Treasurer 
told Coloma that his master was ready to make peace, what- 
ever was dene about the Palatinate, and that his demand for 
a declaration had only been made to stop the mouths of the 
wretches who were trying to sow discord between himself and 
Spain. l 

Cottington, in fact, had private orders to hold out hopes 

that if his masters mediation were not accepted by the States- 

Ma General, England would interfere in a far more 

Proposed decisive manner. On May 10, Olivares and Onate 

mgfinstthe were authorised to listen to a proposal which the 

English ambassador had made for a league offensive 

and defensive against the Dutch. 2 Of course the Spaniards 

were delighted. Powers were at once sent off to enable Charles 

to mediate conjointly with the Infanta Isabella as soon as his 

1 Cottington to Dorchester, March 3 ; Dorchester to Cottington, 
March 21 ; The King to Cottington, April 7, S. P. Spain. Dorchester's 

answer to Coloma, April _\ Coloma to Olivares, April -, Siinancas 
A1SS. 2519. 

- Consulta of Olivares and Onate, Jan. -*-, 1631 (misdated 1632), 
Simancas JlfSS. 2520. 


own peace was made with Spain. He was to offer his media- 
tion to the Dutch as satisfaction in full of all demands which 
might be made upon him for assistance in accordance with the 
terms of the Treaty of Southampton. If the Dutch refused to 
accept it, he might consider himself free from all obligations to 
them. At the same time Philip himself wrote to assure Charles 
that not only would he support the claims of his brother-in-law 
at the approaching Diet, but that, if the exiled Frederick were 
rendered capable of holding territory in Germany by the revo- 
cation of the ban, he would at once surrender into his hands 
the fortresses in the Palatinate which were garrisoned by Spanish 
troops. 1 

It was a strange revolution of events. The days of James 

and Gondomar seemed to have returned. Charles expressed 

j une- himself content with offers which six years before 

Missonsof had a t his instigation been indignantly rejected. 

Anstruther J . J 

and Vane. Anstruther was to go to Ratisbon to negotiate with 
the Emperor. Vane, who had returned to England, was to go 
back to the Hague to ask the Dutch to accept the proposed 
mediation. He was also to hold out hopes of what might 
happen if the negotiation with Spain proved unsuccess- 
Juiy s- f u ^ n yy e ma y then," Charles expressed it in Vane's 
instructions, " make this virtue of necessity. We shall have 
leisure to rectify our affairs at home, to make friends abroad, 
and by a joint quarrel with those who have equal if not more 
interest in the restitution of the Palatinate, work better effects 
than by the course we have hitherto continued of diversion by 
the war upon Spain ; for expedience hath shown us that to beat 
the King of Spain until he bring the Emperor to reason is not 
the next way to gain our desires ; besides, it is impossible for 
us alone to effectuate this great work, except our friends and 
allies join with us more heartily than hitherto they have done." 
A league with Spain against the Dutch, or a league with the 
Charles and Dutch against Spain, was to Charles but means to an 
Richelieu. en( j. He was perhaps right in thinking that Riche- 
lieu's professions of interest in the public welfare were hollow. 
1 Rojas to Cottington, May *-*. Philip IV. to the King, May 11' 
Simaticas MSS. 2574. 


Richelieu cared for the national aggrandisement of France and 
for the humiliation of the House of Austria, and he was ready 
to seek any allies who would help him to attain his object ; 
bat he did not, like Charles, fancy that allies could be gained 
without definite action on his own part, or without a resolution 
to associate himself with those great currents of popular feeling 
in which strength is ultimately to be found. 

Affairs in Germany were rapidly approaching a crisis. On 
the one hand, the resolution of the Emperor and the Catholic 
States to carry out the Edict of Restitution exaspe- 
Dismissai of rated the Protestants. On the other hand, the ravages 
Waiienstem. an( j oppressions of Wallenstein and the Imperial 
army exasperated the Catholic States. At the Diet of Ratisbon, 
Ferdinand was compelled to dismiss Wallenstein at the demand 
of the Elector of Bavaria and the Catholic Princes. The great 
military instrument which had hitherto overpowered all resist- 
ance was shattered. Before it could be reconstructed a fresh 
enemy appeared to attack that Empire which was outwardly 
Landing of so strong, but which had grown so weak through its 
Gustavus. inward distractions. In June, Gustavus Adolphus 
landed on the Baltic coast. 

Richelieu had been ready to profit by every circumstance. 
All through the year French troops had been fighting in Italy. 
French emissaries had been busy at Ratisbon, hounding on the 
angry princes against Wallenstein. A French envoy, in con- 
junction with Roe, had patched up the truce between Sweden 
and Poland which set Gustavus free for his great enterprise. 
Charles was strongly urged to ^eize the opportunity, and to 
strike for the Palatinate in the only way in which he had a 
chance of regaining it, by placing himself on the side of 

Charles could neither accept nor reject a policy so promising 

and yet so hazardous. He listened to appeals from every side. 

He assured both the Dutch and the French that he 


Hesitation of would join them on some future occasion, if his ne- 

r es ' gotiation with Spain should fail. For the present he 

adopted his father's favourite device for freeing himself from 

responsibility. He gave permission to the Marquis of Hamilton 


to levy six thousand volunteers for the service of Gustavus. a 
September course which would not implicate himself, whilst it 
Hamilton's gave him, as he fancied, a title to the gratitude of 
voters. the King of Sweden.' 

Roe, who had by this time returned from Germany, was 

amongst the most active supporters of a more warlike policy 

Charles proposed to send him back as his ambassador 

Roe asks for ..,.,. 

further to Gustavus. Roe told him plainly that unless he 
could carry with him a large sum of money the 
mission would be useless, and he soon found that his master 
ceased to care to listen to his advice. 2 

If Charles had held aloof from the German war on the 
ground of his own inability to take part in war at all, no reason- 
Charles's a l e objection could be raised to his inaction. Almost 
poverty. at j^g momen t when the Swedish army was crossing 
the Baltic, a story was going the round of the English Court, 
telling how the Queen, in receiving a French lady who came 
to see her and the infant Prince, had been obliged to direct 
that the shutters should be closed, lest the visitor's critical eye 
should detect the signs of poverty in the ragged coverlet of the 
bed. It is possible that the tale was untrue or exaggerated ; 
but how was a king to go to war of whom such a story could 
be credited for an instant ? 3 

No difficulties of this kind, however, could restrain Charles 

from meddling with Continental affairs. At Madrid, indeed, 

Nov no further obstacle was placed in the way of the 

The treaty of negotiation for peace, and on November 5 a treaty 

was signed which reproduced, with a few unimportant 

modifications, the treaty which had been concluded in 1604. 

Charles received the news with the liveliest satisfaction, and 

1 Dorchester to Vane, Aug. 16, S. P. Holland. Undated secret ne- 
gotiation in S. P. France, dated approximately by a letter from Montague 
to Richelieu, Aug. -, Aff. Etr. xliv. 96. Salvetti's Navs-Letters t 

Sept g. 

Salvetti's News-Letters, - 

1 Soranzo's despatch, June ^' Venice MSS. 


ordered bonfires to be lighted in the streets. The Queen, 
on the other hand, took care to note her displeasure 
by appearing at a banquet given to Coloma in her 
soberest attire, and it was observed that there was but little 
enthusiasm in the public demonstrations. The unofficial parti- 
sans of peace were mostly to be found amongst the merchants 
who looked forward to the prospect of enriching themselves, 
now that the fear of the Dunkirk privateers was removed. 1 

On December 7 Coloma swore to the peace in his master's 

name. At the same time he placed two papers in Charles's 

hands. The one contained the King of Spain's promise 

The peace to do his best for the restoration of the Palatinate. 

*wom. The o( .| ier conta j ne( j the authority to Charles to 

mediate with the Dutch. 2 

The Prince of Orange at least, did not form a high opinion 
of the value of either of these papers. " Whenever," he said to 

Vane, "either the Upper or the Lower Palatinate is 
1631. ' *. 

Jan. 14. restored by treaty, I will give his Majesty my head, 
Prin w ceo f f he which I should be loth to lose." Nor did he think 
Orange. mO rc of Charles's capacity for war than he thought of 
his capacity for negotiation. " The Emperor," he added, " is 
powerful and great, and to think of the recovery of the Palati- 
nate by the sword may be as full of difficulty as by treaty.' 
Besides, the King's treasure was exhausted, and he was 'in 
dispute with his people.' If he wished the States to bind them- 
selves to make no peace without the restitution of the Palati- 
nate, he must ' be pleased timely to consider of the way and 
means ' of maintaining the undertaking ' upon solid grounds.' 
Vane replied that his master was thinking of some way to provide 
money. Frederick Henry shook his head. Only by a Parlia- 
ment, he said, could money be readily obtained. 3 

The Prince little thought what a price Charles was prepared 
to offer for the Palatinate. On January z a secret treaty was 
signed at Madrid by Cottington and Olivares for the partition 

1 Salvetti's News- Letters, Dec. !?!- 17 . 

20, 27 

2 Soranzo's despatch, Dec. ^, Venice MSS. 
1 Vane to the King, Jan. 14, S. P. Sweden. 

1631 A SECRET TREATY. 177 

of the independent Netherlands. The two kings were to make 

, 2 war upon the Dutch by land and sea till they were 

Secret treaty reduced to submission. In the part which was to be 

ceded to England, the Roman Catholic religion was 

to be freely tolerated. No corresponding stipulation was inserted 

on behalf of Protestantism in those lands which were to be 

handed over to the King of Spain. 1 

No doubt everything was not settled by this nefarious instru- 
ment. It still needed Charles's ratification. It seems, too, that 
there was no more than a general understanding upon the order 
in which each Government was to take the steps to which it 
was bound. In Spain there was a tendency to think that the 
promise of an intervention with the Emperor would be fulfilled 
by a few formal words. In England there was a tendency to 
think that nothing short of the complete restitution of the 
Palatinate was intended. Charles, at all events, took care to 
remind the Spanish ambassador of the extent of his expecta- 
Feb f tions. Upon taking leave, Coloma asked for certain 
Coioma's favours which had been granted to former ambas- 
5 ' sadors. Charles replied that the cases were different. 
In his father's time there had been friendship between England 
and Spain. Now there was only a ' peace barely and simply 
concluded, with promise of further satisfaction.' 2 

Pending Charles's resolution on larger questions, there was 
one way in which he hoped to reap a profit from his new ally. 
Money Cottington brought home with him 8o,oooZ. in 
the U Neth f er- Spanish silver, to be made over in bills of exchange 
lands. t o Brussels for the payment of the troops in the 

Netherlands. So much bullion, to the simple economists of 
the day, was a mine of wealth. London would become the 
exchange of Europe where the precious metals would be re- 
ceived, and nothing but paper would be given in return. The 
Dutch might grumble if they pleased. 3 The ambassador received 

1 Secret Treaty, Jan. , Clar. S. P. i. 49. Drafts of this treaty, as 

well as the treaty itself, are at Simancas. Dorchester refers to a different 
ilocument altogether in Clar. S. P. n, A pp. xxxiv. 
* Memorial, Feb. 19, S. P. Spain. 

3 Joachimi to the States-General, April 6, Add. MSS. 17,677 N. fol. 163. 


his reward on his elevation to the peerage by the title of Baron 

Early in March instructions were sent to Anstruther to set 
out for Vienna, that he might put the Spanish professions to 
March s . the test. The mission was hopeless from the begin- 
sent t to ther mn o- Gustavus had been establishing himself in 
Vienna. Pomerania during the autumn and winter. It was im- 
possible that either the Emperor or the Catholic States should 
listen to a demand for the re-establishment of a Calvinistic 
prince in Southern Germany. Charles, too, had given offence 
Hamilton's ^7 n ^ s permission to Hamilton to levy volunteers for 
levies. Gustavus. The explanation with which he had ac- 

companied the act was not likely to be considered satisfactory 
at Vienna. Coloma had been told before he left that he was 
not to be surprised if Charles should think fit to assist Gusta- 
vus, ' engaging himself in the public cause of the liberty of 
Germany,' which 'hitherto,' he added, 'we have not done, but 
only permitted our subjects to serve him ; yet it may be that 
shortly we shall, of which we judge the Spanish ministers should 
not be very sorry, for that -by that means we shall have a tie of 
that king not to go further than for the liberty of Germany.' l 
Hamilton's levies, in short, were to serve as a threat to the 
Emperor to drive him to the surrender of the Palatinate, whilst 
they might also be used as a check upon the ambition of Gus- 
tavus if that end were once obtained. 

Charles's designs were far too complicated to prosper. He 
thought he had done much when he granted Hamilton n,ooo/. 
Roe's com- f r n ' s levies, leaving him to depend afterwards 
ment. upon Gustavus for support. Roe's comment was the 

utterance of common sense. " I fear nothing," he wrote, " but 
the greatness of the design, not laid low enough in the foun- 
dations to build so high." He wished that the King had him- 
self undertaken the enterprise in his own name. 2 

Whilst Charles was attempting to stand well with the House 

1 The King to Anstruther, March 21, S. P. Germany. 

2 Roe to Elizabeth, March 22, ibid. Hamilton subsequently received 
a grant of 1 5,01 5/. 


of Austria and its enemies at the same time, Richelieu was 
Richelieu's aiming at the less difficult object of uniting the 
designs. two branches of the opposition to that House. In 
January, by the Treaty of Barwalde, he engaged to provide 
. t Gustavus with money, whilst Gustavus promised to 
The Treaty leave the Catholic religion unmolested where he found 
of Barwalde. it ^51^^ an( j undertook to allow the Elector 
of Bavaria and the Catholic League to enter into a treaty of 
neutrality if they chose so to do. Four months later on, May 10, 
a secret treaty was signed between France and Ba- 

May to. * 

Treaty be- varia, by which they mutually guaranteed to one 
France and another the territories which they respectively pos- 
Bavana. sessed. The Upper Palatinate was therefore placed 
by this treaty under French protection. 

To substitute political opposition to the House of Austria 
for the religious conflict between Catholic and Protestant was 
Richelieu's object. His plan was simplicity itself when com- 
pared to the airy imagination of Charles. Yet even Richelieu 
had aimed at more than he could accomplish. The Edict of 
Restitution stood in the way. The Elector of Bavaria wished 
to preserve it intact. Gustavus had not only come to de- 
troy it, but saw in the terror which it produced a lever by 
which the German Protestant princes, more especially the 
Elector of Saxony, might be driven to throw in their lot with 
his own. 

As yet John George of Saxony held aloof, hoping still that 
the Emperor would abandon the edict, and spare him, as a 
Storming of German prince, the odious necessity of joining a 
Magdeburg. f ore jg n invader. Tilly, who had succeeded Wallen- 
stein at the head of the Imperialist armies, was assailing Mag- 
deburg, which had prematurely dt clared in favour of Gustavus. 
John George barred the way against the Swedish succours, 
and on May 10, the very day of the signature of the treaty be- 
tween France and Bavaria, the city was taken by storm. Amidst 
blood and flame the citadel of North German Protestantism 
perished with a mighty destruction. The next day the cathe- 
dral alone stood untouched amidst the blackened ruins. 

In all probability the fire was the work of a few desperate 

N 2 


citizens. 1 The whole Protestant world believed it to be the 
deliberate work of Tilly. 

The future course of the war depended on the Elector of 
Saxony. John George had placed himself at the 

Position of . - - . 1-1 i 

the Elector head of a league which was ready to support the 
of Saxony. Emperor tf on i y ^ Edict o f Restitution were aban- 
doned or even modified. 

John George's request received support in an unexpected 
quarter. Olivares deserves a place amongst the most tragic 
figures in history. He was not one of those blind guides who, 
like Charles of England, rush headlong into danger from sheer 
incapacity to discover its existence. No physician was ever 
more skilful in forming the diagnosis of physical disease than 
Olivares was in fathoming the diseases of the State. He was 
perfectly aware that Spain was sinking under the strain to which 
she was subjected. He never blinded himself to the absolute 
necessity of cutting short the demands upon the blood and 
treasure of the country. For all that, he knew well that he 
could not stay his hand. His shrewd words were never fol- 
lowed by wise deeds. The monarchy which he served was 
bound by its past history, and he was not the man to cut loose 
the ties. With the heroism of calm and impassive courage he 
guided Spain into the valley of death as wittingly as he who 
rode, at the head of the six hundred Englishmen, up to the 
muzzles of the guns of Balaclava. 

The Spanish Government now gave wise counsel to the 

M Emperor. Alliance with the Elector of Saxony 

Counselor against France and the Elector of Bavaria, on the 

ires> basis of the suspension of the Edict of Restitution was 
the policy recommended by Olivares. 2 Ferdinand would not 

1 Wittich, Magdeburg) Gustav Adolf, und Tilly. 

3 ' ' Mucho conviene en el estado presente de las cosas en que el movi- 
miento contra la casa de Austria es casi universal que el Emperador mire 
por si y ponga el honibro a su propria defensa y conservacion por todos los 
medios permetidos a la religion Catholica que se pudieren disponer, y 
siendo cierto que el mundo tiene hoi al Duque de Baviera por el enemigo 
mayor de la casa de Austria, y el que mas va machinando su ruin con 
ligas y negociaciones secretas (quando no lo sea) es licito al Emperador 


listen. He insisted on the maintenance of the Edict. He 
spoke contemptuously of the Saxon armaments. John George 
was arrogantly bidden to dismiss his troops, and to submit to 
the head of the Empire. 

With a whole world crashing about his ears, Ferdinand had 
no time to listen to the pleadings of the English ambassador. 
Anstruther turned to the Spanish ambassadors, 
y ' urging upon them the wisdom of revoking the Edict, 
and satisfying the dispossessed princes. He got but little com- 
Anstruther f rt ^ rom them. " Acts," he was told, "so solemnly 
at Vienna, done, upon mature deliberation, could not be un- 
done or revoked without a world of difficulty." l 

Neither the King of Spain nor the Emperor would mould 

their policy in accordance with Charles's wishes. They knew 

well that from him they had nothing to fear or to hope. 

Months had passed away, and the secret treaty against the 

Dutch had not been ratified in England. In March, 


Hamilton's Hamilton had been sent to Scotland to levy volun- 
voiunteers. i&Q ^ for Q ustavus 2 j t was enough to irritate the 

Catholic Powers, not enough to compel their respect. Hamilton 
found that in Scotland, at least, the name of the half-hearted 
King was not a tower of strength. There was plenty of enthu- 

hazer un particle por el dano que despues seria irreparable. El camino es 
quietar y dar satisfaction al Duque de Saxonia a condicion de que con sus 
armas y poder, y con el de sus parciales asista al Emperador contra quales- 
quier enemigos suyos publicos y secretos ; y esto no parece difncil de 
encaminar, per ser el de Saxonia Principe constante y que se mueve tarde y 
se halla oLligado de la casa de Austria, y siendo hoi el edicto de la resli- 
tucion de los bienes ecclesiasticos la causa porque se inquieta, en la qiul 
persiste el Emperador llevado du su zelo, o persuadido de los que con pre- 
texto de piedad quieren irritar contra el a los liereges, es facil y justo 
suspender la execucion del edicto a mejor sazon, y grangear al Duque de 
Saxonia y sus confederados, y asegurar con el la propria defensa, y estorvar 
una guerra de religion en el imperio, que si comienza a creer sera de 

gravisimos danos a la causa Catholica." Philip IV. to Cadereyta, May -* 

Simancas AfSS. 2547. 

1 Anstruther to Dorchester, July 5, S. P. Germany. 

- Articles by the King of Sweden, May 31, 1631. Articles by Hamil- 
ton, March I, 1631. Burnet, Memoirs of Hamilton, 7. 


siasm for the Protestant cause, and many a younger son had 
already carried his stalwart arm and his ill-lined purse to the 
service of Gustavus. Four hundred men only could be in- 
duced to follow Hamilton's standard. 1 Amongst the volunteers 
in Germany the vacillations of Charles formed a frequent topic 
of the rough soldiers' talk around the camp fire or the mess 
table. To these hardy adventurers it was as incomprehensible 
as it was in more polished circles how the King of England 
could hope to regain his brother-in-law's inheritance by nego- 

Some of this talk came to the ears of Donald Mackay, Lord 
Reay, who commanded a regiment in the service of Gustavus. 
LordReay's Either in the mouths of his informants or in his own 
against brain, the gossip of the camp assumed a formidable 
Hamilton, shape. He told a friend, Lord Ochiltree, that 
Hamilton never intended to go to Germany at all. He meant 
to rely on his levies, to seize the King, to execute Weston and 
the partisans of Spain, and to make himself King of Scotland, 
to the crown of which, after the descendants of James, he was 
the nearest heir. Ochiltree, who had reasons of his own for 
disliking Hamilton, passed the tale on to Weston. 

Where Charles placed his confidence he placed it wholly. 
" He does not trust many," wrote the Venetian ambassador, 
" and when he conceives a good opinion of anyone, 
disbelieves he does not let it fall. He is accustomed to say that 
it is necessary to grant his favour to a single person, 
and to maintain him in it, as he would be attacked on all sides 
with calumny." 2 His resolution to support Weston 's political 
authority did not stand in the way of his personal friendship 
with Weston's enemies. Holland, Pembroke, and Hamilton 
were the constant companions of his leisure hours, and he was 
the last man to believe a slanderous accusation against one 
Hamilton's w ^h whom he was in the habit of daily intercourse, 
reception. When Hamilton returned from Scotland he received 
him with open arms. He told him of the charges which had 

1 Beaulieu to Puckering, May 25, Court and Times, Si. I 2. 
* Soranzo's despatch, Jan. - g , Venice MSS. 


been brought against him, and insisted upon his sleeping in the 
same room with himself as the best evidence in his power to 
give of his entire disbelief in the alleged conspiracy. 1 

The accusers paid the penalty of their rashness. Ochiltree 
was put upon his trial at Edinburgh as a sower of sedition. 
Fate of the He was condemned to perpetual imprisonment, from 
accusers. which he was only liberated twenty years later by 
Cromwell. Lord Reay named David Ramsay, an officer ia 
Hamilton's service, as his informant. Ramsay denied the 
truth of the accusation, and as no sufficient evidence could be 
produced on either side, the two Scotchmen demanded the 
1632. right of settling the question by combat. A Court of 
May 2. Chivalry was formed, and trial by combat was awarded. 
The King, however, interfered, and sent both parties to the 
Tower, till they consented to give securities against breach of 
the peace.'-' 

Charles no sooner heard of Hamilton's ill success in Scot- 
land, than he gave him permission to try his fortune in England. 

In London his drums attracted even fewer volunteers 

June. than in the Northern kingdom. 3 The experience 
"fsTs'menin of those who had gone forth at Charles's bidding 
England. to ^ war j n Q ermanv was no t encouraging. At 

Hamilton's entreaty, the lords lieutenants of the counties were 
ordered to give every assistance in filling his ranks, pressing 
only excepted. There were always vagabonds and rogues 
enough in England, of whom the official people were anxious 
to be rid, and Hamilton, as Mansfeld had done before him, at 
last gathered round him a force of which the numbers were 
more imposing than the quality. On July 16 he 
Sails to join sailed from the Downs with 6,000 Englishmen. The 
Gustavus. levies had by this time reached 1,000, and 

with the whole force he started for the Baltic. 4 

It was probably the knowledge that Charles had given his 
1 JBunu't, 13. '* State Trials, iii. 425-520. 

1 Salvetti's News-Letters, iHI^t. 
July 4 

4 Salvetti's News- Letters, July -^-^. Dorchester to Carleton, June 22, 
S. P. Holland. 


support to Hamilton which induced Richelieu to make over- 
July 25. tures to Weston for the establishment of a better 
ture^from' understanding between themselves. Weston replied, 
Richelieu, doubtless by his master's direction, that no such 
understanding was possible unless France were honestly re- 
solved to assist in the recovery of the Palatinate. 1 

There was something not very dissimilar in the position of 
the two ministers. Both of them were possessed of the fullest 
Richelieu confidence of their respective Sovereigns. Both of 
and Weston. th eni found their most vigorous assailants in the 
family circle of their Sovereigns. In France, the two Queens, 
Anne of Austria and Mary de Medicis, the wife and mother ot 
Louis, joined with his only brother Gaston, Duke of Orleans, 
in an attempt to overthrow the Cardinal. It was an opposition 
directed not against the weak points of the Cardinal's govern- 
ment, but against his strongest. If it had been successful, it 
would have substituted plunder and waste for orderly finance, 
the despotism of the aristocracy for the despotism of the King, 
1630. and subserviency to Spain for a national policy. In 
The^^of November 1630, the clique had almost succeeded 
Dupes. j n overthrowing .Richelieu by taking advantage of a 
moment of weakness in the King. But Louis recovered him- 
self in an instant, and the Day of Dupes, as it was called, left 
the Cardinal more firmly seated in power than before. 2 

Great as was the sullen indignation of all who had taken 
part in the plot, that of the Queen Mother was justly regarded 

as the most dangerous. She had once ruled France 
J u 'y- 
The Queen as Regent, and her proud spirit could ill brook the 

ca^esVo'lie disgrace of being supplanted by one whom she had 
Netherlands. h erse if assisted to office. In February it was found 
necessary to place her in confinement at Compiegne. The 
next month the weak and cowardly Gaston fled across the 
frontier to the Duke of Lorraine, and in July Mary de Medicis 
herself escaped from her prison and took refuge in the Spanish 

1 Wake to Weston, July 25. Weston to Wake, Aug. 14, S. P. France. 
* For the relations between the King and Richelieu, see Topin, 
Louis XII J. et fiichelieu. 


It was no secret that the Queen Mother and Gaston would 
offer the aid of their influence in France to the Spanish Govern- 
ment. A gentleman had come from Gaston immediately after 
his flight, to urge Charles to make common cause with Spain 
and Lorraine against the detested Cardinal. Gerbier, who had 
lately gone to Brussels as Charles's resident minister, was carried 
off his balance by the enthusiasm of the place. He retailed to 
his master all the tattle of the fugitive Queen ; told how the 
lustful Cardinal had offered his hateful love to his master's wife, 
and had attempted to poison her when he found his overtures 
rejected. The King of Spain, he said, had sent money to aid 
the good cause. There were to be levies in Alsace, in Lorraine, 
and the Spanish Netherlands. The Papal Nuncio, accom- 
panied by the ambassadors of the Queen Mother's sons-in-law, 
the King of Spain and the Duke of Savoy, was formally to 
adjure Louis to hear what his mother had to say in her own 
defence, and it was expected that Charles, as the third son-in- 
law, would follow the example. 1 

Charles had no inclination to take the part assigned to him 

by the Queen Mother. Still less was he willing to risk a war in 

Aug. s. order to restore her to her country. Gaston, who 

Charles does talked of leading an army into France, asked for the 

not conn- J 

tenance her. loan of some English ships. His mother urged that 
Rochelle and Une" were without fortifications and would easily 
be taken. She forgot that the names must sound somewhat 
ominously in the ears of her son-in-law. 

The fact was that Spain was not quite so ready to assist her 
as she hoped. Olivares, with his usual good sense, had seen 
the arrival of the Queen in his master's dominions with the 
greatest displeasure, and only wanted to be quit of her as soon 
as possible. He had no wish to add an open war with France 
to his other difficulties. 2 

The Queen Mother was growing impatient. 
Through Lord Chaworth, who was returning from Spa, she sent 

1 Dorchester to Wake, March 30, S. P. Savoy. Gerbier to Weston, 
June 29 ; Gerbier to the King, July I, n, 30, S. P. Flanders. 
y Henrarcl, Marie de Medicis Jans les Pays Bas, 99. 


a pressing message to Henrietta Maria, begging her to grant 
her a refuge in England. 

Henrietta Maria had other motives than that of filial affec- 
tion for supporting her mother's demand. The strife between 
the Cardinal and Mary de Medicis had found an 

Quarrel be- } 

tween Hen- echo in the English Court. Early in 16^0 Chateau- 

rietta Maria . . , _ J . 

and Fon- iieuf had returned to r ranee, to occupy the post of 
Keeper of the Seals. His successor, the Marquis of 
Fontenay-Mareuil, had come into collision with the Queen by 
insisting on the dismissal of her confessor. 1 By this time Cha- 
teauneuf had been drawn into the opposition against Richelieu 
by the influence of the bright eyes of the Duchess of Chevreuse, 
who was the soul of the Spanish party in France, 
neufs in- His influence was strong with the Frenchmen and 
Frenchwomen who still remained in the Queen's 
Court, and he placed himself at the head of an intrigue for 
the overthrow of Weston, who was led by his desire of peace 
to avoid an open breach with Richelieu. Chateauneuf's chief 
instrument was the Chevalier de Jars, a witty adventurer, who 
chatted with the Queen and played tennis with the King. At 
last the contest between the Chevalier and the Ambassador 
broke out into an open scandal. Fontenay employed a house- 
June, breaker to enter the window of De Jars, and to carry 
Theft of his o ff the cabinet in which his correspondence with 

correspon- * 

dence. Chatcauneuf was contained. The Queen demanded 

justice. Fontenay declared proudly that he had a right to use 
any means he chose to discover the disloyal manoeuvres of his 
master's subjects, and Charles refused to press the matter 
further. He saw that there was a common bond between the 
intrigue against Richelieu and the intrigue against Weston, and, 
like Louis, he sustained his minister against his wife. 

It was not a moment in which Charles was likely to listen 
to the Queen's pleadings for her mother. He consented to send 
Sir William Balfour to the Low Countries on a complimentary 
mission to Mary de Medicis, but he shut up Lord Chaworth 

1 Salvetti's News-Letters. June -H. Fontenay to Richelieu, \ Iay 26> 
1 J 20, 27 ' June 5, 

June. A/. Etr. xliv. 274, 276. 


for a few days in the Fleet, for presuming to bring a political 
visit of the message to the Queen without his sanction. Hesi- 
jJkTther for- tatm g as ne was m more important matters, he was 
bidden. unalterably firm in his resolution not to admit of a 
visit from his mother-in-law. 1 

Olivares might well strive to avoid a collision with France. 

Sooner or later it w-ould be unavoidable. That huge Spanish 

August, monarchy, without geographical or political cohesion, 

Difficuiuesof was a t once a menace to the weak and a prey to the 

the bpanish 

monarchy, strong. It had interests everywhere but at home, and 
at every point its interests were understood otherwise than they 
were understood at Madrid. At Brussels the Infanta Isabella 
and her ministers were giving encouragement to the French 
refugees in spite of Olivares. At Vienna the Emperor wel- 
comed gladly the support of the Spanish Government, whilst 
he turned a deaf ear to its counsels. 

Amongst those counsels, the recommendation to restore 
the Palatinate can hardly be seriously reckoned. Anstruther, 
weary of delays at Vienna, applied to Quiroga, a 
Anstruther friar in close connection with the Spanish embassy. 
SpanLh 6 The friar told him frankly that the King of Spain 
demands. \vould not even surrender the towns garrisoned by his 
own troops for nothing. He must have either a general peace, 
or assistance against the Dutch. The statement was confirmed 
by the ambassadors themselves. They had no other instruc- 
tions, they said, than a paper which had been shown to Cotting- 
ton in Spain. 2 

What this paper was is not exactly known. It seems, how- 
ever, to have been unsigned, and to have contained a proposal 
that the restitution of the Spanish part of the Palatinate should 
be conditional on the carrying out of the secret league against 
the Dutch. 3 

1 Gerbier's despatches, Aug. and Sept., S. P. Flanders. Soranzo's 
despatches, Aug. - 9 , Sept. 3i*&& Oct. -Z-, Venice MSS. 

29' 19, Oct. 3 ' 17' 

* Vane, the younger, to Sir H. Vane, Sept. 13, S. P. Germany. 
1 A comparison of the extract from Dorchester's letter printed in Clar. 

S. P. ii. App. xxxiv. with Olivares' Consulta of Nov. T - (Simancas MSS. 


The unsatisfactory nature of the news which reached 
Charles from Vienna induced him at last to open negotiations 
Vane sent to w i tn Gustavus. Sir Henry Vane had long been de- 
Gnstavus. signaled for the mission, but it was not till the end of 
September that he was allowed to cross the sea. As a friend 
and dependent of Weston he could be trusted not to engage 
his master too precipitately in war ; but so great had been the 
pressure put upon Charles to throw himself into the cause of 
Gustavus, that even Weston's friends had thought it prudent to 
associate themselves with the popular cry. Parliament, they 
said, would soon be summoned in order to provide means for 
reinforcing Hamilton. 1 

When Vane landed in Holland on his way to Germany, 
shouts of victory rang in his ears. A Spanish attempt to land 
Sept. 7. a military force on the coast of Holland had been 
o/Breiten 1 ^ s 'g na ^y defeated. Almost at the same time news 
few. arrived that Tilly had been struck down by Gustavus 

at Breitenfeld. 

Richelieu's calculations had proved abortive. He had 
hoped to hold back Tilly from attacking the Swedes, through 
his influence with the Elector of Bavaria, whilst he launched 
Gustavus against the hereditary dominions of the House of 
Austria. 2 The refusal of Ferdinand to admit the slightest 
modification of the Edict of Restitution cleared away these 
diplomatic cobwebs. He ordered Tilly to attack the Elector 
of Saxony, and Tilly obeyed. John George, loth as he was to 
abandon his loyalty to the Empire, took his stand with Gustavus. 
Maximilian took his stand once more with Ferdinand. Catholic 
and Protestant were again fairly face to face. 

The victory of Gustavus was complete. His success at 

2519) makes this probable. The paper was certainly not the secret treaty 
itself, as it is described by OUvares as unsigned. Ranke (Engl. transl. 
ii. 22) seems to confound ' the paper given to Lord Cottington ' with the 
secret treaty. 

1 Soranzo's despatches, Aug. p, Sept. ' , Venice MSS. 

2 It is clear from Wake's despatches (S. P, France) that Richelieu ex- 
pected that Tilly would leave Gustavus alone. I must leave it to German 
inquirers to clear up the secret history of Maximilian's conduct in this year. 


Breitenfeld decided once for all that North Germany was to 
character of- be essentially Protestant The Edict of Restitution 
the victory. was swe pt awa y a j a blow. Ferdinand's system, like 

that of Charles, was one which rested on technical legality, 
and which took no account of the feelings and aspirations of 
the populations over which he ruled. Guarded by the most 
numerous and well-appointed armies which the world had 
seen since the days of the Roman Empire, that system had 
been dashed to the ground through its own inherent weakness. 
Could Charles hope to escape a like calamity ? In Breitenfeld 
lay the promise of Marston Moor and Naseby of the ruin of 
a cause which rested on traditionary claims in the face of the 
living demands of the present hour. 

Gustavus pushed on for the Rhine to lay his hand on the 
Ecclesiastical States of the League, to gather round him the 
Gustavus on scattered forces of the Southern Protestants, and to 
the Rhine, drive home the wedge which he had struck in 
between France and Bavaria. Vane had hard work to come 
up with him. On November 6 he found him at Wiirzburg. 
NOV. e. He had been sent, he explained, to 'treat of an 
view e with ter ' alliance ... the ground whereof was to be the 
him - restitution of both Palatinates and the liberty of 

Germany.' Gustavus naturally inquired what help Charles 
purposed to give. If he would send him ten or twelve 
thousand men in the spring, and a large sum of money 
besides, he was ready to give the engagement he required. 
The German princes, he said, had made no stipulations for 
the Palatinate. It concerned his Majesty to look about him, 
for, unless he gave a Royal assistance, the proposal could not 
be entertained. Vane thought all this very unreasonable. 
" If this king," he wrote, "gets the Palatinate, it will be hard 
fetching it out of his hands without satisfaction." It would 
be far better to get it in a peaceable way by negotiation at 
Vienna. 1 

Few in England would have echoed Vane's opinion. The 
news of Tilly's defeat had been received with an outburst of 

1 Vane to Dorchester, Nov. 12, S. P. Germany. 


enthusiasm. Sir Symonds D'Ewes, the plodding antiquary, 
raised his head from his plea-rolls and genealogies to 
Enthusiasm record how ' the sole honour and glory of this victory, 
m England. ngxt under God to whom the religious King of 
Sweden gave the only glory redounded to the Swedes and 
Scots and other nations in the Evangelical army.' By Gusta- 
vus, he added ' the bloody robbers, ravishers, and massacrers 
of Tilly's army were not only executed, but infinite comfort 
afforded to the distressed and persecuted and oppressed Pro- 
testants in Germany, so as all men hoped he in the issue would 
assert fully both the true religion and the ancient liberties of 
Germany.' l Eliot, from his prison in the Tower, awoke to new 
delight. ' If at once,' he wrote, ' the whole world be not de- 
luded, fortune and hope are met.' 2 

To Charles the great deliverance brought no pleasant 
thoughts. When the news reached England he was planning 
Charles a closer alliance with the Emperor and Spain. The 
succour the Abbot of Scaglia had come to England to revive 
Emperor. j^g negotiation about the Palatinate. Weston and 
Cottington had already agreed with him that the Emperor 
should be allowed to levy 12,000 volunteers in England, and 
on October 7 the Abbot was able to write that Charles was 
ready to enter into a league with the Emperor and the King of 
Spain against their enemies in Germany, and to induce his 
brother-in-law to do the same as soon as justice was done him 
in respect to the Palatinate. 3 

Weeks passed away, and there was no sign that either Spain 

or the Emperor would pay any attention to these lavish offers. 

The friar, who had been in England in 1624 under 

November. . . ,_, i n T> i 

Hesitation of the name of Francesco della Rota, returned to throw 

the blame upon Anstruther's zeal for the interest of 

the King of Sweden. Then came bad news from Hamilton. 

His troops had melted away, as Mansfeld's had melted away 

1 D'Ewes, Autobiography, ii. 59 60- 

a Eliot to Luke, Oct. 3. Forster, Sir jf. Eliot, ii. 438. 

' Consulta on the Abbot of Scaglia's despatches, Nov. j?, Simanau 
AfSS. 2519. 


before, and he had only 500 men left. Charles could not make 

up his mind one way or another. He did not like 
Hamilton's to give up hope of an agreement with the Emperor 

till he heard again from Spain. He was not ready to 
send reinforcements to Germany. He ordered Dorchester to 
write to Vane that ' His Majesty felt Hamilton's losses like a 
father of his people to whom their blood is precious,' and he 

would risk no more of their lives. 1 Yet when Vane's 
moursofa despatch announcing the offer of Gustavus arrived, 

it seemed incredible that Charles should reject it, if 
he really cared for the Palatinate. The rumours of an ap- 
proaching meeting of Parliament acquired fresh consistency. 2 
With the thought of a Parliament men's minds turned instinc- 
tively to the prisoner in the Tower who would once more 
become a power in the land. A message, the purport of which 
is now unknown, was sent to Eliot from some persons about 
the Court. By popular rumour it was magnified into a visit 
paid to him by men high in place to bespeak his goodwill in 
the days when their doings were likely to be called in question. 
Their effect Eliot knew better than to trust such rumours. He 
upon Ehot. declined to answer the message he received. Yet he 
was by no means insensible to the critical position of affairs. 
In a sketch of the doings of the first Parliament of Charles 
which he drew up about this time, he spoke enthusiastically of 
Gustavus as ' that person whom fortune and virtue had reserved 
for the wonder of the world.' For himself he had no hope in 
this life. He knew better than Holland or Roe that no earthly 
consideration short of absolute necessity would induce Charles 
to summon another Parliament. Yet he never doubted that 
some day or other that necessity would arise. His historical 
sketch he named Negotium Posterorum. His own example and 
the example of those who had been his fellow- workers he be- 

1 Joachimi to the States-General, Dec. 3, Add. MSS. 17,677. N. 
fol. 243. Soranzo's despatch, Dec. , Venice MSS. Dorchester to An- 
struther, Nov. 29, S. P. Germany. Dorchester to Vane, Dec. 19, S. P. 

* Roe to Hepburn, Dec. 12, S. P. Dom. cciv. 34. 


queathed to generations coming, nothing doubting that the 
spirit of England would not be extinguished for ever by the 
heavy weight of silence under which the voice of his country 
was smothered for a time. 

If Eliot had little hope that his own voice would again be 
heard in Parliament, he could not deny himself the satisfaction 
Eliot's not of setting down upon paper the thoughts which burned 
of a speech. w ithin him. If opportunity were by any strange freak 
of fortune to be allowed him, he would not be the counsellor 
of compromise. He held that the things which had been done 
were worse than all the misgovernment which had called forth 
the Petition of Right. "The one was an act of oppression 
against liberty and the laws ; but the design of the other is to 
put at once a conclusion to the work of darkness, and to de- 
press and ruin law and liberty itself. For it is not in any 
stream, in any branch or derivative of our freedom, in some 
one particular of the laws, but it is in the spring and fountain 
from whence all the streams flow, that the attempt has been 
made, not to trouble and corrupt it for a time only, but wholly 
to impeach its course, to make the fountain dry, to dam and 
stop it up for ever." Parliament, he added, was the sanctuary 
of liberty, the guardian of ' the rubrics of the law.' In harmony 
with Pailiament kings had ruled happily ; in discord with Par- 
liament success was impossible. 1 

Such was Eliot's last word on politics, such was the stan- 
dard which he set up round which his countrymen might 
gather. In him spoke the voice of a mighty nation, 

Eliot's last . ... , . . , , 

political conscious of its powers and impatient of the tutelage 
under which it had been thrust What if folly had 
mingled with wisdom in the last Parliamentary session ? What 
if the leaders of the Commons, Eliot himself included, had 
been hasty and impatient where quietness and confidence 
would have been the higher wisdom ? We at least have been 
admitted within the closed doors of Charles's Cabinet. We at 
least have seen the value of that statesmanship to which he 
appealed as giving him a claim to guide the nation in its onward 

1 Forster, Sir J. Eliot, ii. 445. 


course. There was no educative power in a ruler who set before 
himself low and poor objects, and who strove to gain those 
objects in the manner in which Charles was striving to recover 
the Palatinate. If there were errors and follies in the House 
of Commons, they were far exceeded by the errors and follies 
of the Court. 

The time would come when Charles's misgovernment would 
bear its appropriate fruit. The mass of men rise up against the 
consequences of misgovernment, not against misgovernment 
itself. Those who, like Eliot, see too clearly into the future, 
have to bear the burthen of the coming generations. The rumour 
Dec. 21. which told of consultations with Eliot pointed him 
pr. r sonmeJu out ^ or Charles's vengeance. On December 2 1 came 
of Eliot. an or der from the Council restraining access of per- 
sons of several conditions to Sir John Eliot. Nor was this all. 
* My lodgings," he wrote on the 26th, "are removed, and I am 
now where candle-light may be suffered, but scarce fire." l This, 
too, was in the cold Christmas weather. Here are no traces of 
that generosity with which Hamilton was welcomed home from 
Scotland. Charles could cling to the friend with whom he had 
associated from his youth up. It required some imagination 
to picture to himself the sufferings or the nobility of the man 
whom he had known but as an enemy, and had looked upon 
as a traitor to his beloved Buckingham. 

Charles had no intention of allowing Eliot ever again to 
raise his voice in opposition. He called upon the Privy Coun- 
Charies's c il to advise him upon the means of satisfying the 
Gustavu"'s f demands of Gustavus. There was but one answer to 
demands b e made. If 2oo,ooo/. or 3oo,ooo/. were to be ex- 
pended upon the German war, it would be necessary to sum- 
mon Parliament. Such counsel found no favour with the King. 
The very mention of a. Parliament, he said, was derogatory to 
his authority. The King of Sweden must be helped, but not 
in such a way as that. Any other plan, even if it presented 
greater difficulties, would be more opportune. The Council 
was thus driven back upon projects similar to those which had 

1 Forsier, Sir J. Eliot, ii. 448. 


ended in so signal a failure before the session of 1628. One 
proposed a general collection in the churches. Another thought 
that all pensions should be stopped, and the expenses of the 
Court cut down Nothing serious could come of a discus- 
sion, thus commenced. 1 

Those at Charles's side who took an interest in the fortunes 

of German Protestantism were fast falling. Conway had died 

1639. a year ago, and he had soon been followed by May. 

Feb. 15. It was Dorchester's turn now. On February 15 he 

Dorchester s . * J 

death. died, ' Christianly and manly/ expressing, ' as well 

in his latest words as in his life, that his affections were right to 
God, to his master, and the good cause.' His master cared 
little for the good cause, and even amongst those who were not 
so indifferent, there were many who, as Roe said, were ready 
to 'inquire curiously what the King of Sweden doth, and cen- 
sure him for doing too much or too little, but who did not 
consider that they themselves were doing nothing.' 

In his perpetual oscillation Charles was now tending, or 
thought he was tending, to the side of Gustavus. He was dis- 
Further ne- satisfied with the coolness w\th which his overtures 
wtifcu"- f r a l ea g ue na d been received at Madrid. 2 Before 
tavus. the en d o f 1631 he had given permission to his 
brother-in-law to betake himself to Germany, and to place him- 
self at the disposal of the Swedish king. 3 Then came fresh offers 
to Gustavus. But the negotiation was rapidly degenerating 
into a mere bargain, like those negotiations with Parliament 
and army which fifteen years later were to prove to the world 
that no political reconstruction was possible of which Charles 
was an element. Gustavus was as little to be bargained with 
as Cromwell. The constant harping upon the string of the 
Palatinate, to the disregard of larger objects, was an offence to 
him. How could he bind himself to the restitution of a pro- 
vince which France and Bavaria were leagued to keep ? Was 
the great cause of the political and religious independence of 

1 Soranzo's despatch, * c 3 , Venice MSS. 

2 SalvetU's News-Letters, Feb. i?. 

1 Dorchester to Vane, Dec. 31, S. P. Swede*. 


Germany to be postponed to make way for a petty dynastic 
interest ? He was ready enough to do the best for the Pala- 
tinate that circumstances would permit. Charles wanted him 
to act as if the one question of pre-eminent importance to the 
world was the question whether an incapable and headstrong 
prince was to rule again over the dominions which he had 
inherited from his father. What hearty co-operation could there 
be between two men so differently constituted ? 

Gustavus had need to walk warily. In the midst of his 

triumphant progress, when all Protestant Europe was shouting 

applause, he was weighing the difficulties before 

Gustavus ,. . 11, ..,.. . . , 

and the him above all, the difficulties which were likely to 
arise from France. When he kept Christmas at 
Mentz, a French army was not far off. Richelieu had fallen 
upon the Duke of Lorraine, and had frustrated the hopes of 
Gaston and the Queen Mother. It was not, however, merely 
to crush the Duke of Lorraine that he had brought Louis with 
him. The Cardinal cherished hopes which were not as yet 
destined to be fulfilled. He hoped that the German princes 
and cities on the left bank of the Rhine the Ecclesiastical 
Electorates especially would take refuge from the storm of 
Protestant conquest beneath the lilied banner of France. The 
great German river would form the boundary, if not of French 
territory, at least of a French confederation, whilst Gustavus 
would be thrust on to the work for which Richelieu had origi- 
nally destined him the work of crushing the House of Austria 
for the benefit of France. 

Richelieu's schemes were premature. As yet the German 
princes showed no disposition to revolve as satellites round 
the throne at Paris. The Elector of Bavaria drew closer and 
closer to the Emperor. Before the end of January, Louis, 
sick and disappointed, hurried home from the army, leaving 
the affairs of Germany to be disposed of by Gustavus. He 
was not anxious to remain as a looker-on, when he had ex- 
pected to step forth as the arbiter of Europe. 1 

1 Wake's despatches (S. P. France} contain minute information on all 
ibis, and show the tone prevailing from day to day in the French camp. 

O 2 


Involved as he was in a diplomatic struggle with France, 
Gustavus was not likely to bind himself as Charles 

Jan. 2. 

Further ne- desired that he should be bound, without securing 
w^ttTGu"- the absolute co-operation of England in his great 

designs. He told Vane, with perfect frankness, of 
his difficulties. He thought it by no means improbable 

that by raising the Protestant standard he would 
Demands of bring upon himself a combined attack from France 

Gustavus. an( j gpam He therefore aske( J for the ai( J of an 

English fleet to assure his communications from Sweden and 
his position on the Baltic coast. He asked, too, that if the 
Palatinate were recovered, the restored Elector should tolerate 
the Lutheran religion in it, and should place at his disposal 
the military strength of the country during the remainder of 
the war. Eight regiments of foot and 3,000 horse were to form 
Charles's contingent, of which he was himself to have the 
absolute military direction. He would then do his best to 
recover for Frederick his lands and dignities, and if any towns 
in the Palatinate fell into his hands, he would at once place 
them in the hands of the Elector. 

Charles, in short, was to have perfect confidence in Gusta- 

vus, and was to resign himself to the fusion of his own particular 

interest with the larger interests of German Protes- 

Theirrecep- . ,, . . - , _ . ,, .. 

tion in Eng- tantism. I he great majority of the Privy Council 
spoke strongly for the acceptance of these terms. 1 
Charles would not hear of them. The request that in certain 
eventualities he should oppose the fleets of France and Spain 
seemed to him to be totally inadmissible. A league for general 
April 26. co-operation he did not need. By such a course he 
counter- 8 ro- ' must change his settled quiet state, or else desert 
positions. that party to which he doth adhere.' There were, 
however, ' other two kinds of leagues, one of amity and alliance, 
the other of aid and assistance, and neither of these breaketh 
peace nor giveth just offence to any.' For either of these he 

1 Soranzo's despatch, Feb. / jj v "<-'t MSS. Salvetti's 
Letters, March . 


was prepared. He would give Gustavus io,ooo/. a month, in 
return for which the King of Sweden was to endeavour by all 
means possible, whether by arms or treaty, to ' effect the resti- 
tution of the Palatinate, delivering up to the Elector the places 
in it which were recovered.' As Charles omitted to stipulate 
that his contribution should continue for any definite number 
of years, he, in reality, bound himself to nothing beyond the 
first month's contribution. 1 

Before Charles's proposal reached Gustavus, the south of 
Germany was at the feet of the Swedish conqueror. On 
March. March 21 he entered Nuremberg. On the 26th he 
u>r!esof C " was at Donauworth. On April 4 he came up with 
Gustavus. Tilly on the Lech, and forced the passage of the river 
after a sharp fight, in which the veteran commander of the Im- 
perialist forces was mortally wounded. Gustavus pressed on. 
He liberated Augsburg, and entered Munich in triumph. 

The news of victory was received in England with inde 
scribable emotion. It had come, wrote Roe, like rain in a dry 
May. "We will not give the King of Sweden leave 
ihe C newsin to conquer like a man by degrees nor human ways, 
England. k ut we \Q O ]L he should fight battles and take towns 
so fast as we read them in the Book of Joshua, whose example 
indeed he is." The Papist, he added, hung his head like a 
bulrush. The offer of io,ooo/. a month was not all which 
Gustavus had a right to expect, but ' a wise Prince would accept 
of less than he wished to obtain.' 2 
, In drawing near to Gustavus, Charles had taken 

March 10. . ' 

Negotiations some steps to draw near to Richelieu as well. On 
with France. ^ arc j 1 IO a treaty was arranged to put an end to 
the commercial disputes which had arisen with France since 
the peace. Four days afterwards, Charles's ambas- 
Marc M. sa( j orj gj r i saac Wake, presented to Louis a letter 
from his master, formally proposing a joint action in Ger- 
many. Like Gustavus, Louis had views and objects of his 
own which were not absolutely identical with those of Charles. 

1 Articles, April 26. Coke to Vane, May 2, S. P. Sweden. 
8 Roe to Horwood, May 28, S, P. Dom. ccxvi. 92. 


He was ready, he said, to do anything for Frederick which 
April. would not tend to the ruin of the Catholics of Ger- 
a*nd h the eu many. 1 For the moment Richelieu had work enough 
Queen to do at home. The party of Gaston and the Queen 
party. Mother caused him continual disquiet. He struck 

hard and pitilessly. Mariliac, the political chief of the oppo- 
sition, died in prison. His brother, a Marshal of 
viay. France, perished on the scaffold. Gaston prepared 
an invasion from the Spanish Duchy of Luxemburg, whilst the 
Duke of Lorraine, eager to avenge his defeat of the previous 
summer, permitted Gaston's troops to enter his terri- 
tory. Richelieu treated the act as a declaration of 
war, entered Lorraine, and compelled the Duke to sign a treaty 
by which he surrendered three of his strongest 

June 16. J 

Richelieu fortresses as a pledge of his enforced fidelity. 2 This 

Lo^ne!" time Richelieu's hand stretched over Germany itself. 

The Elector of Treves, failing to obtain support from 

The French _, .' . L^. ,.,. 

at Ehren- the Emperor, invoked French protection. 1 he lilies 
of France floated over the fortress of Ehrenbreitstein. 
Before commencing the attack upon Lorraine, Richelieu 
had thought fit to despatch the Marquis of St. Chaumont as a 
May. special envoy to prevent Charles from taking offence. 
St^c'hau^ ^ e did not promise himself much from England ; 
mont. but if Spain should attack France, in consequence 

of its interference in Germany, it was just possible that Charles 
might be roused to give some kind of assistance. " Although," 
wrote Louis in his instructions to St. Chaumont, " the English 
should not keep any of their promises, it is important to bring 
about some sort of union between the two crowns." St. Chau- 
mont was also charged to effect a reconciliation between the 
French ambassador, Fontenay, and Henrietta Maria, in order 
to bring the Queen's influence to bear in the interest of 
France. 3 

1 Wake to Coke (?) March 11. Wake to Weston, March 16. Treaty 
signed, March 19, S. P. France. 

* Instructions to St. Chaumont, May *-?, AJf. Etr. xlv. 215. 

1632 ADVICE OF SIR T. ROE. 199 

Charles received St. Chaumont coldly ; talked about his 
good intentions, but went no farther. The Queen refused to 
be reconciled to Fontenay. He had done her no special 
injury, she said, but she did not like him. 1 

The views of those who advocated an alliance with Sweden, 

independently of France, may best be taken from an argument 

in its favour forwarded by Roe to the Earl of Hol- 

June 9. 

Roe's po- land whilst St. Chaumont was still in England. Roe 
luicdiadvice. ^^ not a g ree ^^ tnose w h o f ea red danger from the 

ambition of Gustavus. " The King of Sweden," he urged, " is 
not to be considered in his branches and fair plumes of one 
year's prosperity, but in his root, and so he is not at all to be 
feared ; and it hath been a false and a feigned suspicion in 
those who from his sudden growth have augured that he might 
prove dangerous to the public liberty. That kingdom of itself 
can do no more than Boeotia without Epaminondas. If this 
king had a foundation, ancient dependence, and a settled 
posterity, it were great wisdom to stay his career and limit it ; 
but when we see he doth embrace more than he can hold, and 
is rather a torrent than a live spring, that all his glory and 
greatness depends upon his own virtue and life ; and that in 
case of sure mortality it is certain that all this inundation will 
dry up and return to the first channel of moderation, it is mere 
folly to object him, mere malice and envy to make the seeming 
care of the future hinder that course of victory which God hath 
chosen by him, not to set up a new monarchy, but to temper 
the fury of tyranny and to restore the equality of just govern- 

From France or Spain, Roe thought there was nothing to 
be hoped. Neither of these states cared for anything except 
the gratification of its own ambition, and they were therefore 
'best employed like millstones to grind themselves thin.' The 
true alliance for England was with the Dutch. It was true that 
the States had been ungrateful and insolent ; but they had 
not been kindly treated, and if the English Government would 
meet them in a friendly spirit, it would obtain their friendship 

1 Fontenay to Richelieu, ? -. St. Chaumont to Richelieu, May (?) 
J June 9 

A/. Etr. xlv. Ill, 112. 


In return. " I confess," he continued, " they abuse their liberty, 
deceive us in trade, cozen us of our money ; but I cannot be 
angry with them that they prove cunning friends when we prove 
slothful and improvident of our own advantages. One settled 
treaty would at once stop all these breaches and limit them." 

Roe's policy was an immediate alliance with Sweden and 
the Netherlands, with a view to a general Protestant alliance, 
to be independent of both the great Catholic monarchies. Roe, 
as was well known, was the candidate of the party opposed to 
Weston for the vacant secretaryship. Charles was not likely 
to give the post to one who held opinions so different from his 
own. Wake, who, if he had lived, would probably have been 
Dorchester's successor, 1 had lately died of a sudden attack of 
fever. The new Secretary was Francis Windebank, 

June 13. 

Windebank Clerk of the Council, a man utterly unknown in the 
tary ' world of politics ; but he was an old friend of Laud, 
and Laud's friend was not likely to frighten Weston by urging 
the King to a breach with the House of Austria. Roe con- 
cealed his disappointment as best he might. " That there is a 
new Secretary brought out of the dark," he wrote to Elizabeth, 
" is no news ; preferred by my Lord of London not my Lord 
Mayor whose sufficiency may be great for anything I know. 
In other things he is well spoken of, and if he please my master, 
he loves himself better than he ought that is displeased. These 
are the encouragements we receive that have laboured abroad ; 
but for my own part I protest I envy not ; I can make my 
own content as fit as a garment, and if the State be well I cannot 
be sick. We cannot say there is any faction in England. All 
goes one way, and I know not the wit of it." 2 

Truly there was no faction in England. The voice of Par- 
liament was silent If words of opposition rose to the lips of 
Holland's private men they were seldom expressed loudly 
P 811 *- enough to reach the Government The party at 

Court, with Holland at its head, to which, for want of better 
support, Roe looked for help, had neither moral earnestness 

1 Gussoni's despatch, March ^, June -, Vtnice MSS. 
* Roe to Elizabeth, July I, S. P. Germany. 


nor intellectual power to recommend it. The taunts and 
allurements with which it sought to draw Charles to break with 
Weston have left scarcely an echo behind them. Their views 
must be sought in two plays in which Massinger made himself 
the exponent of a more daring foreign policy than that which 
was acceptable to Charles. In Believe as you List, licensed for 
the stage in January 1631, the dramatist reproduced, 
t/iei"*as S under fictitious names, the refusal of Charles to grant 
v " Ltst - assistance to his brother-in-law, and satirised the 
mastery which Weston himself seduced, as it was alleged, by 
the gold of the Spanish ambassador exercised over the mind 
of the King. Under the feigned name of Flaminius, the am- 
bassador of Rome, Coloma is made to point out to Charles the 
material advantages of an inglorious peace : 

Know then, Rome, 

Tn her pious care that you may still increase 
The happiness you live on ; and your subjects, 
Under the shadow of their own vines, eat 
The fruits they yield them their soft musical feasts 
Continuing, as they do yet, unaffrighted 
With the harsh noise of war entreats as low 
As her known power and majesty can descend, 
You would retain, with due equality, 
A willingness to preserve what she hath conquered 
From change and innovation. 

In the play the ambassador requires not merely the aban- 
donment, but the actual surrender of Antiochus, who stands for 
Frederick. From this King Prusias, who stands for Charles, 


Shall I, for your ends 

Infringe my princely word ? or break the laws 
Of hospitality ? defeat myself 
Of the certain honour to restore a king 
Unto his own ? and what you Romans have 
Extorted and kept from him ? Far be't from me I 
I will net buy your amity at such loss. 
So it be to all after times remembered 
I held it not sufficient to live 
As one born only for myself, and I 
Desire no other monument. 


This, Massinger would seem to say, is the real Charles, 
generous and high-minded. It is only the low, coarse-minded 
minister who stands in the way. Coloma points to Weston 

Here's a man, 

The oracle of your kingdom, that can tell you, 
When there's no probability it may be 
Effected, 'tis mere madness to attempt it. 

Then comes a stinging comparison between the weakness 
of Bithynia and the strength of Rome, in other words, of Eng- 
land and Spain. The power of the former the ambassador 

Ts not to be disputed, if weigh 'd truly, 

With the petty kings, your neighbours ; but when balanced 

With the globes and sceptres of my mistress Rome, 

Will but I spare comparisons, but you build on 

Your strength to justify the fact. Alas 1 

It is a feeble reed, and leaning on it 

Will wound your hand much sooner than support you. 

You keep in pay, 'tis true, some peace-trained troops, 

Which awes your neighbours ; but consider, when 

Our eagles shall display their sail-stretched wings, 

Hovering o'er our legions, what defence 

Can you expect from yours ? 

The ambassador has his way. The King, on the plea of 
necessity of State,' submits. 

In The Maid of Honour, printed in 1632, and probably 
written in the beginning of that year, or in the end of the year 
before, James I. and his dealings with the Palatinate 
The Maid are brought upon the stage, in order to censure, in- 
HfHoncur. directlyj Charles's abandonment of Hamilton. Under 
the name of Roberto, King of Sicily, we see James arguing 
that he is not bound to support his ally if he made the first 
attack upon others. He had only engaged to send him support 
if he were himself attacked. Then, as if to draw attention to 
those parts of his father's policy which Charles was imitating, 
the King is made to boast of his peaceful rule 

Let other monarchs 

Contend to be made glorious by proud war, 
And with the blood of their poor subjects purchase 


Increase of empire, and augment their cares 

In keeping that which was by wrongs extorted, 

Gilding unjust invasions with the trim 

Of glorious conquests ; we, that would be known 

The father of our people, in our study 

And vigilance for their safety, must not change 

Their ploughshares into swords, and force them from 

The secure shade of their own vines, to be 

Scorched with the flames of war ; or, for our sport 

Expose their lives to ruin. 

To this Bertolo answers in words which bear the impress of 
the fierce love of adventure and prowess which sways alter- 
nately with more peaceful energies the breasts of Englishmen. 

Here are no mines of gold 
Or silver to enrich you : no worm spins 
Silk in her womb, to make distinction 
Between you and a peasant in your habits : 
No fish lives near our shores whose blood can dye 
Scarlet or purple ; all that we possess 
With beasts we have in common : nature did 
Design us to be warriors, and to break through 
Our ring, the sea, by which we are environed, 
And we by force must fetch in what is wanting 
Or precious to us. 

The King will hear nothing of his counsels. Think not, he 


Think not 

Our counsel's built upon so weak a base 
As to be overturned, or shaken with 
Tempestuous winds of word. As I, my lord, 
Before resolved you, I will not engage 
My person in this quarrel ; neither press 
My subjects to maintain it ; yet to shew 
My rule is gentle, and that I have feeling 
O' your masters sufferings, and these gallants, weary 
Of the happiness of peace, desire to taste 
The bitter sweets of war, we do consent 
That, as adventurers and volunteers, 
No way compelled by us, they may make trial 
Of their boasted valours. 

In another speech Charles himself is brought before us as 


he appeared tu those who were dissatisfied with the language 
which he had used to Hamilton. 

'Tis well, and, but my grant in this, expect not 
Assistance from me. Govern as you please 
The province you make choice of ; for, I vow* 
By all things sacred, if that thou miscarry 
In this rash undertaking, I will hear it 
No otherwise than as a sad disaster, 
Fallen on a stranger ; nor will I esteem 
That man my subject, who in thy extreme 
In purse or person aids thee. 1 

So great was the strength of the feeling which gave rise to 
these two plays that even Weston himself bowed before it In 
July. expectation of the reply of Gustavus, preparations 
West's were made for a more active intervention on the 
mission. Continent Jerome Weston, the Treasurer's eldest 
son, was sent on a mission to France and Italy. He was to 
pave the way to a better understanding with France, and to 
urge Louis to a direct declaration for the restitution of the 
Palatinate. He was to say that Charles hoped that the French 
were by this time ' sufficiently disabused ' of the notion that 
anything could be effected so long as attention was paid to 
the ' interests of Bavaria.' "The King," wrote the 
Treasurer himself to his son, " hath left no way un- 
tried, nor lost any opportunity in uniting his counsels or aids 
with princes that be interested, as to the King of Sweden, 2 both 
by the Marquis of Hamilton and his ambassador, with large 
offers of monies and other kinds of aids, which we hear now 
by our ambassador are likely to be accepted, and that by this 
that friendship is concluded." 3 

1 See a paper on The political element in Massinger in the Content- 
porary Review for Aug. 1876. It had been previously read before the New 
Shakspere Society, when Professor Hales pointed out that the suggestion 
in Believe as you List (iii. I), that Antiochus should fly to Parthia, to Egypt, 
or to ' the RatavianS is evidence that Massinger's thoughts were travelling 
in the direction which I had assumed. 

a The MS. is a copy, and perhaps some words have been accidentally 

1 Instructions to Jerome Weston, July 24. Weston to Jerome Weston, 
Aug. 10, S. f. fratue. 


Weston was not the man to speak so strongly unless he had 
believed that the alliance with Gustavus was practically con- 
Weston ex- eluded. It was his first object to be on the winning 
aTiiancewith s 'de, and no man had better opportunities of ascer- 
toberon- tamm g tne direction in which his master was drifting, 
eluded. It was not long before he learned that he had over- 
estimated the pliancy of Gustavus. It might seem indeed that 
July. when the draft treaty from England was placed in 
Vane's hands, the King of Sweden could no longer 
a ff or d to despise any genuine offer of assistance. In 
the hour of supreme danger Wallenstein had been recalled to 
the command, and entrusted with unheard-of powers. His old 
veterans flocked round his standard at his call, and in a few 
weeks he was at the head of an imposing army. His first work 
was to manoeuvre the Saxons out of Bohemia. Then he turned 
sharply round and pinned Gustavus to the defence of Nurem- 
berg. Yet, even in his mortal duel with the great strate- 
Charies's gist, Gustavus would not hear of accepting Charles's 
jea*d by offers. Doubtless he had a keen recollection of the 
Gustavus. treatment to which Christian of Denmark had been 
subjected, and he may well have doubted whether Charles's 
engagement to pay io,ooo/. a month was in reality worth as 
many pence. At all events, he knew that Charles had refused 
him the naval aid for which he had asked, and had fixed no 
time during which the payment was to be continued. The 
aid now offered, he said, was useless, ' and for the indefiniteness 
of the time it was against all form of proceeding in alliances.' 
Charles's overtures were absolutely rejected. Vane had nothing 
more to offer. He took his leave, and returned to 
Vane and England. Anstruther's position at Vienna had already 
Anstruther. become unte nable, and he, too, had been ordered 
home. To Charles's unfeigned surprise, neither of the bellige- 
rents considered his alliance worth purchasing. l 

Charles's failure was one more illustration of the truth 
which Bacon was wont to urge upon James in his dealings with 

1 Vane to Coke, July 19, S. P. Sweden. Curtius to Vane, Sept 14, 
S. P. Holland. 


his Parliaments. Success is to be had, not by sharp bargaining, 
August, but by sympathy tempered by prudence. Of this 
chariest system Roe was now the spokesman. " If his Majesty," 
diplomacy, he wrote to Holland, " take not care of the King 
of Sweden, not so much by money, or that only, as by counten- 
ance and reputation of unity and colligation, though an enemy 
may beat him out of Germany, cold and jealous friends may 
undermine and undo him." Very different was the thought of 
Weston's friends when the tidings came from Nurem- 
berg. "You have given," wrote Cottington to Vane, 
" great satisfaction to his Majesty, and to those his ministers 
by whom he manageth his foreign affairs. Through your wise 
and dexterous carriage of that great business you have saved 
his Majesty's money and his honour, and yourself from any 
kind of blame, as I understand it." ' 

Whether abstention from interference in Germany were 
wise or not, it was impossible to represent Charles's diplomacy 

Oct. 17. in a favourable light. The public appetite for news 
silence im- had called forth swarms of pamphlets and gazettes, 
the gazettes, which told all who could read how Gustavus had 
forced the passage of the Lech, and how Maximilian, the 
oppressor of the Palatinate, had abandoned his own capital to 
the invader. The mere news that such successes had been 
achieved without the help of England would easily be regarded 
as a tacit reproach to Charles, and the authors of the gazettes 
were sternly bidden to refrain from ' all printing and publishing 
of the same.' 2 

The Swedish king was not long to cross Charles's path. 
If he was not defeated at Nuremberg, at least he had ceased to 

Nov. 5. be victorious. In his train was the exiled Frederick, 
Gustavus w h o had come to beg his inheritance of the disposer 

and Frede- .... , , , . , 

nek. of power. Earlier in the year he had weaned the 

King of Sweden with his obstinate refusal to submit to reason- 
able conditions. Gustavus had not, however, given up hopes 
of numbering him as an active member of the great Protestant 
alliance. " I will let my brother of England know," he said, 

1 Cottington to Vane, Sept. 29, S. P. Dom. ccxxiii. 56. 
3 Council Register, Oct. 17. 


"that my intention is more generous towards the Kirg of 
Bohemia than that I should have any mercenary dealing with 
him, as Vane would have me." ' The time was fast passing 
when words or acts of his would avail anything. Wallenstein 
Nov 6 had marched northwards and was ravaging Saxony. 
Battle of Gustavus hastened to the succour of his ally. On 
dejuiTof" 1 November 6 the victory of Liitzen was won by the 
Gustavus. Swedish army ; but the soul of that army expired on 
the field in the death of its heroic king. 

In England the death of Gustavus was felt as keenly as if 
he had been a national commander. " Never," wrote D'Ewes, 
" did one person's death in Christendom bring so much sorrow 
to all true Protestant hearts, not our godly Edward's, the 
Sixth of that name, nor our late heroic and inestimable Prince 
Kenry, as did the King of Sweden's at this present." The 
general sorrow was not shared by Charles. He had already 
Charles pro- found out a successor to Gustavus in the helpless, 
Frederick' headstrong Frederick. ' I conceive hope,' he said, 
shall lead < [ n God's goodness, that as He hath taken away 

the German _ ' * 

Protestants, him whom he had exalted, so He may restore him 
whom he hath humbled.' It was said of Henry VIII. that 
he knew a man when he saw him. It was evident that this 
quality had not descended to his successor. Charles at once 
despatched a messenger with i6,ooo/. in ready money to enable 
Frederick to levy an army of 10,000 men. He prepared to ask 
the Dutch to transfer to his brother-in-law the contribution 
which they had hitherto paid to Gustavus. Around the 
Elector Palatine, he hoped, would gather the German princes 
and the German cities, so ' that the body which was kept 
together by the power and credit of the King of Sweden ' might 
' not by his death be dissolved and broken.' 

Frederick never heard of the great expectations which had 
been conceived of him in England. A merciful fever snatched 

him away from one more bitter disappointment. 
Frederick's Thirteen days after Gustavus had fallen, the candle 

of his restless unsatisfied life died away in the socket 
at Bacharach, by the side of the eddying Rhine. 

1 Durie to Roe, Nov. II, S. P. Germany. 


The death of Gustavus and the death of Frederick were 
alike welcome to Weston and his clique. In their detestation 
Boa?tof of war there was nothing noble, no preference of 
prosperity higher objects to be gained in peace, no wise con- 
m England. ce ption of international duties. To them material 
prosperity had become an idol, and the habit of regarding the 
accumulation of wealth as the sole test of greatness was ac- 
companied by a contemptuous indifference for the trials and 
sorrows of other nations, of which the hot Protestant partisan 
of earlier days had never been guilty. Flatterers found their 
account in praising the skill with which Charles had preserved 
England from the scourge of war. The low and debased feel- 
ing which had been fostered by men in high places found full 
expression in the lines in which Carew, himself a royal cup- 
bearer, commented on the death of the Swedish King : 

"Then let the Germans fear, if Cresar shall 
On the United Princes rise and fall ; 
But let us that in myrtle bowers sit 
Under secure shades, use the benefit 
Of peace and plenty which the blessed hand 
Of our good king gives this obdurate land. 

Tourneys, masques, theatres better become 
Our halcyon days. What though the German drum 
Bellow for freedom and revenge 1 The noise 
Concerns not us, nor should divert our joys." 

Perish Europe, if only England may fiddle in safety ! Already 
the sword was sharpening which should chastise the men by 
whom such things were said. 

Charles's first thought on receiving the news of the death 
of his brother-in-law was to solace his widowed sister. Laying 

r) ec . 27> aside for the moment his fear that her presence in 

hilTiedlo England would serve as an encouragement to his 

Kr.giand. own Puritans, he despatched Arundel to offer her a 

refuge at his Court. At first in her loneliness she was inclined 

l6 ., 3- to accept the offer ; but she very soon changed her 

January, mind, and told Arundel that her duty to her family 
required her presence in Holland. It is probable that she 


shrank from exchanging a dwelling-place amongst a sympathetic 
people for the daily annoyance of the companionship of a 
brother who promised so much and performed so little. 1 

With the death of Gustavus the question of the relations 
between England and France assumed increased importance. 
If, as was only too likely, jealousies broke out amongst 
portancf o? the princes who had with difficulty been kept in har- 
rance ' mony by the genius of the Swedish king, it would be 
absolutely necessary that Richelieu should take a more pro- 
minent part in the conflict than he had hitherto done. And 
at this time circumstances were occurring in the Netherlands 
which forced Charles to consider how his alliances would affect 
the national interests of England as well as how they would 
affect the dynastic interests of his family. 

The weight of the war fell heavily upon the Spanish Nether- 
lands. The King of Spain was no longer able to protect them 
1632. as of old. Every year was now marked by some 
Discontent f res h defeat, and unless the course of the Prince of 
Spanish could be stopped, the whole country would 
lands. sooner or later be at his disposal. The nobility 

echoed the lamentations of the common people. The proud 
Belgian aristocracy complained that military and civil employ- 
ments alike were in the hands of Castilians. Meetings were 
held, and in the spring of 1632 many of the nobles banded 
together and made overtures to Richelieu for assistance to 
enable them to shake off the authority of Spain. When 
Frederick Henry took the field, he found but cold resistance. 
Venloo and Roermonde quickly surrendered, and 
the Prince proceeded to lay siege to Maestricht. 
Count Henry de Bergh, a Netherlander who had been replaced 
by a Spaniard in the command of the army, passed over to the 
Dutch, and called upon his countrymen to free themselves from 
the foreign yoke. 

In spite of the prevailing dissatisfaction, the country was 
not disposed to follow the interested counsels of a malcontent 

1 Gussoni's despatch, Dec. -^--\, Feb. , Venice MSS. Goring to 

(?) Jan. 5, S. P. Holland. 



nobility. It was afraid of being brought under the sway of the 
June. ftutch Calvinists. It was equally afraid of incor- 
Feeiings of poration with the French monarchy. The Belgians 
totar e d s pe looked down with a well-grounded feeling of 
superiority upon a country where municipal liberties 
and the administration of justice itself were far less developed 
than in the old provinces of the House of Burgundy; ' but 
though they did not wish for revolution, they wished to be rid 
of the intervention of Spaniards in their own internal affairs. 
Above all they wanted peace. 

The wish was a natural one. Yet it was impossible that 
the provinces could remain attached to the Spanish monarchy 
without continuing to share its fortunes. They must shake off 
the yoke or submit to their fate. 

The Infanta was obliged to temporise. In July she sum- 
moned the States-General to meet towards the end of August. 
July. Before the day of assembly came, the discontented 
Gene-If es " noD ^ es applied to Charles's agent, Gerbier, to know if 
summoned, they could count on his master's help. Charles was 
Au at first startled by the proposal. "Since," he replied 

The nobles to his minister, " I am in friendship with the King 
Charles's of Spain, it is against both honour and conscience to 
support. gj ve kj m j ust cause o f q uarr el against me, I being 

not first provoked by him, and a juster he cannot have than 
debauching of his subjects from their allegiance. But 
Aug. 21. s j nce i see a likelihood almost a necessity that his 
Flanders subjects must fall into some other king's or State's 
protection, and that I am offered, without the least intimation 
of mine, to have a share therein, the second consideration is 
that it were a great imprudence in me to let slip this occasion 
whereby I may both advantage myself and hinder the over- 
flowing greatness of my neighbours, so that my resolution must 
depend upon the agreement of these two considerations." 2 
It is no blame to Charles if, believing the overthrow of the 

1 See on all this M. Henrard's book, Marie a'f Medids dans les 
Pays Bos. 

> Gerbier to the King, Aug. 4. The King to Gerbier, Aug. 21, 
Hardwicke S. P. ii. 55, 79- 


Spanish power in the Netherlands to be inevitable, he sought 
c , to avert the absorption of the Provinces by France 

September. ' 

views ( and the Dutch Republic, The establishment of an 
independent Belgian State would have best served 
the interests of England, and would have best served the 
real interests of the population. What was characteristic of 
Charles and his ministers was that they fancied that this could 
be effected with the concurrence of Spain, and that they did 
not see that in order to promote a settlement which would 
be distasteful to both the French and the Dutch, it would be 
necessary scrupulously to avoid any appearance of self-seeking 
on the part of England. At a conference held at the Lord 
Treasurer's, it was resolved to offer the help of the navy to con- 
vey the Spanish soldiers home as soon as they were ready to 
evacuate the Low Countries, and to ask Philip to make over a 
large part of Flanders to Charles, to be held under the Spanish 
crown. The nobility were to be persuaded that the protection 
of England would be far more agreeable than that of the Dutch 
Republic. The English Church was as well ordered as their 
own, and there would be no risk of the introduction of a system 
under which evsry burgher might claim a share in the direction 
of the State. ' 

On August 14 Maestricht surrendered to the Dutch. On 

the 3oth the session of the States-General was opened at Brussels. 

Aug. 3 o. They at once demanded permission to treat for a 

The states- peace or truce with the Northern States without the 

General at . . 

Brussels. intervention of the Executive Government, and tins 
demand was accorded by the Infanta. At the same time the 
Prince of Orange issued a manifesto promising the 
urge them alliance of the Dutch States to the obedient Provinces 
IhelrllTdt if they would declare themselves independent of 
pendence. g pa j n< The Spanish troops would then be forced to 
quit the country, and the Brussels States would become the 
rulers of the Southern Provinces, as the Northern Provinces 
were governed by the States which assembled at the Hague. 

Against this incitement to revolution the Brussels States 
stood firm. They would treat for a truce on the basis of the 

1 Conference at the Lord Treasurer's, 5*. P. f landers. 
V 2 


arrangement of 1609, but they professed their intention to 
September, remain the subjects of the King of Spain. Their 
the^us^lis res l ut ' on seriously compromised the chances of 
States. an arrangement. Doubtless there were many in the 
Northern Provinces who were weary of war, and who would have 
welcomed a cessation of hostilities at almost any cost ; but a 
large party, with Frederick Henry at its head, was by no means 
inclined to give way to peace or truce so long as the Spaniards 
retained a threatening position on their southern frontier. It 
was true that for five years the Dutch armies had been vic- 
torious. Grol, Hertogenbosch, Wesel, Venloo, Maestricht, had 
fallen in rapid succession ; but the Spanish monarchy was not 
crushed. A few seasons of peace might enable it to restore its 
dilapidated finances and to reorganise its military resources. 

With this divergency of feeling, it is not likely that an agree- 
ment would have been come to in any case, and it is therefore 
doubtful whether Charles could have intervened with 

Oct. 22. 

Charles's in- good effect. The course which he actually took was 
pitiable. The tendency to intrigue which was rooted 
in his character had been growing during the last few years. 
He instructed Boswell, his minister at the Hague, to 
tbns to be present at the conferences between the deputies 
Bosweii. of the twQ states-General. He was to do his best, 
in an underhand way, to make any arrangement impossible. 
He was to press the Northern States to include the restoration 
of the Palatinate in the negotiation. He was to hold up to the 
Southern States the advantage which they would gain by an 
open trade with England, and to ' show them what near and 
powerful protection they may have from his Majesty's dominions 
to support them in their freedom and liberties, if they resolve 
to make themselves an entire and independent body ; what in- 
dignity and prejudice they may suffer if they submit themselves 
to those neighbours upon unequal conditions, under whom 
neither their clergy, their nobility, nor their burghers can expect 
those honours, that profit, and that continual defence which 
from his Majesty, upon reasonable and equal terms, they may 
be assured of.' l 

1 Instructions to Boswell, Oct. 22, S. P. Holland. 


Assuredly Charles did not stand alone amongst the rulers 
of the world in resorting to intrigue. Richelieu was quite as 
ready as he was to veil his intentions in a cloud of words and 
to cover his self- seeking with an appearance of disinterested- 
ness ; but, whilst Charles had absolutely no perception of the 
facts of the world, Richelieu surpassed all his contemporaries, 
except Gustavus, in the skill with which he mastered events 
by adapting his course to the currents of opinion around him. 
He had just brought to a close the long internal struggle with 
the French aristocracy. Gaston had at last summoned up 
courage, and had crossed the French border to make his way 
to the South, where Montmorency, the dashing cavalier, the 
flower of the French nobility, was ready to rise at his bidding. 
Aug. a. On the field of Castelnaudary that conflict was 
Defeat of brought to an issue. Richelieu stood up for national 

Montrao- . fc . ' 

rency. unity and religious toleration against those who would 

have made France their prey, who would have stooped their 
heads to the foreigner abroad, and re-lighted the flames of civil 
war at home. The better side prevailed. The gay chivalry 
which followed the banner of the insurgents was no match for 
the steady discipline of the Royal army. Montmorency bowed 
his head as a traitor on the scaffold, whilst Gaston slunk home, 
like a poltroon as he was, to accept a contemptuous pardon 
from his brother. 

Richelieu was thus at liberty to turn his attention abroad. 
He did not build his hopes much upon the oscillations of the 
Richelieu States of Brussels. Charles might dream of thrust- 
Dutcifai- in S the wedge of English power into Flanders by the 
liance. expenditure of a few soft words. Richelieu knew 
that strength was to be found amongst the burgher counsellors 
of the Hague and the tried veterans who had reduced the 
proud citadel of Maestricht to surrender. If the obedient 
Provinces chose to throw off the yoke of Spain, it would be 
easy to satisfy them on all secondary points. If not, an alli- 
ance with the independent States against Spain was the policy 
imposed by circumstances upon France. 

By the middle of November, Charles had learned that he 
had no prospect of effecting his object with the assent of Spain. 


He had directly asked for the surrender of Dunkirk, or of some 
November, other strong place in Flanders, as the price of his 
Charles co-operation. The Spanish Government was not yet 

demands ' . . , 

Dunkirk. reduced to extremities, and returned a peremptory 
refusal. 1 

Charles then turned to France. This time he held language 
which, if he had been strong enough to support his words 
by action, would have been worthy of an English 
turesto r Sovereign. Jerome Weston, who was at the French 
Court, was directed to assure Louis that, though the 
King of England was ready to concur in any step for the libera- 
tion of the discontented Provinces from Spain, he would not 
hear of the increase of Dutch or French territory at their ex- 
pense. He had ' better reason to maintain the Spaniards there 
than to let the French in.' At the same time the Lord Trea- 
surer was profuse in his expressions of attachment to Richelieu, 
and in his assurances of a wish to see France and England 
united on the great questions of the day, the recovery of the 
Palatinate being naturally included. 2 

Two days after these instructions were sent, the Deputies 

from the States-General of both fractions of the Netherlands 

NOV. 24. met at tne Hague. Before the end of the year, it 

The negotia- was evident to all that the negotiation would end in 

tionsat the . . 

Hague. nothing. 1 he Southern States persisted in regarding 
themselves as the subjects of the King of Spain. The Northern 
States were unwilling to come to terms unless the King of 
Spain's authority were declared to be at an end. The negotia- 
tion dragged on, neither party being willing to give up hope of 
a satisfactory conclusion ; but no clear-sighted bystander could 
think it at all likely that such a conclusion would be reached. 

Richelieu, at all events, saw plainly how matters stood. On 
January 3 he instructed Charnace*, the French Ambassador 
at the Hague, to offer to the Dutch increased subsidies and a 

1 Windebank's Notes, Clar. S. P. i. 6l. Salvetti's News-Letters, 
Sept. 23, Nov. 30 

'Oct. 3, Dec. 10 

2 Coke to Weston, Nov. 22, S. P. France, Fontenay to Father Joseph, 
Nov. 17. Fontenay to Richelieu, Nov. 26, AJf. Etr. xlv. 143, 145. 


military force. If Richelieu could succeed in establishing 
French influence in Germany, he would be ready to 
Jan. 3 . engage in open war with Spain, with the object of 
offers 6 toUie effecting a partition of the Spanish Netherlands be- 
tween France and the States-General. 1 
Charles could not make up his mind what to do. In 
November he had instructed Jerome Weston to protest against 
such a partition. There was, however, a large party 

Thepartition .. J -i / 

discussed in at his Court which regarded the scheme with favour, 
though no one in England had any knowledge that 
the proposal had actually been made. If, it was argued, the 
Dutch frontier became conterminous with the French, the Dutch 
would speedily become as jealous of France as they had 
hitherto been of Spain. Necessity would thus drive them into 
the arms of England, and they would be forced to make con- 
cessions to English commerce as the price of political support. 
To these representations Charles was for a moment inclined to 
give ear. Even Cottington declaimed on the approaching down- 
fall of the Spanish monarchy ; 2 and Weston, either because he 
thought it prudent to agree with his master, or because, as 
Philip's agent, Necolalde, fancied, the Spanish Government 
had not bribed him highly enough, talked in the same strain. 
Charles, however, soon repented of his momentary 
weakness. Necolalde had an interview with him, and 
won him back to his old jealousy of France and the States. 3 

Charles was now engaged in a fresh diplomatic intervention 
in Germany. His nephew, Charles Lewis, the eldest surviving 
son of Frederick and Elizabeth, was a boy of fourteen. 
ml'sLion t" * Anstruther was ordered to betake himself to the Chan- 
srmany. ce u or Qxenstjerna, who had succeeded to the conduct 
of affairs after the death of Gustavus. He was to offer assist- 
ance in money, though, if possible, he was to promise a sum 
smaller than the io,ooo/. a month which had been proposed to 

1 Richelieu to Charnace, Avenel, Lellres tie Richelieu, iv. 421. 

2 Intercepted letters of Necolalde to Olivares, j^'-| 6 , Jan. ^-, A/. Etr. 
xlv. 166, 176. 

Necolalde to Olivares, J3 , Simanccu MSS. 2520. 


the late King. In return he was to ask that the Swedes and 
the German princes should acknowledge the right of Charles's 
nephew, and should at once make over to him the strong places 
which they had conquered in the Palatinate. 1 Jerome Weston 
was directed to ask the French Government to support this de- 
mand, and to join if necessary in carrying on the war in Ger- 
many. He was to add with respect to the Low Countries a 
repetition of the message which he had conveyed in November. 
He was to say ' that if they shall agree to erect those interjacent 
countries into free and independent States, his Majesty will give 
no interruption. But if they pretend to share or divide them 
without any consideration of his Majesty's interests, he will to 
his uttermost oppose them.' 2 

How far Charles was guided by Weston in this determina- 
tion it is difficult to say. At all events it was quite in accord- 
Feb. 17. ance w ith Weston's character to keep an eye upon 
Weston t ne dangers likely to arise from the increase of the 

created Earl J 

of Portland, material forces of his opponents, without any com- 
prehension of the moral and spiritual movements by which the 
world was pervaded. Charles seized this moment to testify his 
approbation of the Treasurer's services. He conferred upon 
him an earldom, a dignity which he dispensed with a far more 
sparing hand than his father had been accustomed to do. From 
henceforward his favourite minister would be known as the 
Earl of Portland. 

When Jerome Weston, now by his father's promotion Lord 

Weston, returned to England in March, he brought with him 

., , Richelieu's terms. They were very different from 


Terms those which had been expected by Charles. The 
Lortfweston French asked for a defensive alliance against the 
from France, jjouse of Austria. In other words Charles was to 
bind himself to protect France from a Spanish attack in the 
impending war, and to put an end to the assistance which 
he had given to Spain by convoying money and men to the 
Flemish ports. Louis, in return, would assist in recovering 

1 Anstruther's instructions, Dec., S. P. Germany. 

2 Coke to J. Weston, Jan. 22, S. P. France. 


from the Spaniards any part of the Palatinate which might be 
in their hands. 1 

The discrepancy between the two Governments was thus 
plainly brought to light. Charles expected the King of France 
Discrepancy to rnake war for the recovery of the Palatinate, and 
r^Govern- to re f fam from satisfying his ambition whenever his 
ments. objects might clash with English interests. Richelieu 
asked Charles to take some part; if it were but a subordinate 
one, in his meditated attack upon Spain. With a prince more 
resolute and more powerful than Charles, such a divergency of 
view would probably soon have led to open war. But Richelieu 
knew his man. He was prodigal of assurances of good-will, 
and was firmly resolved to give no unnecessary offence. He 
knew well that Charles's threats would end in words. The 
busy diplomacy of the English Government had been absolutely 
wasted, and it was not likely that fajlure in the past would be 
compensated by success in the future. 

If Richelieu had a political interest in maintaining friendly 
relations with the English Government he had also a personal 
A letter of mterest m maintaining friendly relations with the 
the Queen's Lord Treasurer. The enemies of both were still 
Lwd Wes- in close correspondence with one another. On his 
return through France Lord Weston had met an 
English messenger bearing a packet addressed in Holland's 
hand to a French minister. The fact was enough to awaken 
suspicion in a Weston, and using the privilege of an ambassador 
he opened the parcel. Inside he found a cyphered letter from 
Holland, and another letter from the Queen, which he did not 
attempt to read. He brought both back to England, and 
placed them in Charles's hands. 

The letters proved harmless. Richelieu had discovered that 
Chateauneuf and his instrument, De Jars, both of whom were 
now in France, had joined in the never-ceasing intrigues against 
him, and had sent them both to prison. According to the most 
consistent accounts, Henrietta Maria's letter was written to 

1 Draft Treaty, March. Memjir of Fontenay, April 1 6, Aff. Etr, 
xlv. 222, 223, 235. 


intercede in their favour. 1 If Chateauneuf was the enemy 
of Richelieu now, he had been Portland's enemy before, and 
Charles, who looked with well-founded suspicion upon the 
clique with which his wife was surrounded, warmly declared 
his approbation of Weston's conduct, and, guessing what was 
likely to follow ordered him to refuse any challenge which 
might be sent him. 

The King's prevision was justified by the event. The whole 

of the Queen's Court took up their mistress's quarrel. Holland 

challenged Weston. Charles interfered with decision, 

Westo" is and ordered Holland, who sent the challenge, and 

enge ' Henry Jermyn, who carried it, to be placed in con- 
finement. The Queen's followers turned savagely upon Weston. 
Only a coward, they said, would accept a duel, and then give 
notice of it. The gallant young Lord Fielding, Denbigh's son, 
who was just about to marry Weston's sister, stepped forward 
to vindicate the honour of the family into which he was about 
to enter, and challenged George Goring as the noisiest of the 
offenders. Once more the King interfered, and stopped the 
duel. A new way was then discovered of showing dislike of 
the Lord Treasurer. Crowds of persons of every degree flocked 
to the house in which Holland was confined, to express their 
Sympathy, till this, too, was angrily stopped by Charles. Hol- 
land was then summoned before the Star Chamber. It was 
commonly believed that he would hardly escape without the 
loss of his offices. But Charles could not resist the tears and 
entreaties of his wife. The birth of the Prince of Wales in 1630 
had been followed in 1631 by the birth of the daughter who 
was one day to bring William of Orange into the world. The 
Queen was now looking forward to becoming a mother again, 
and Charles was too tender a husband to deal harshly with her 
preferences at such a time. Holland escaped with a reprimand 
from the Lord Keeper, delivered in the Privy Council. 2 

A common danger drew Richelieu and Portland together. 

1 Brasser to the States-General, Add. MSS, 17,677 O, fol. 41. 

2 Kilvert to Lambe, April 4. Noy to Windebank, April n. Act of 
Council, April 13, S. P. Dom. ccxxxvi. 14, 43, 47. Cottncil Register, 
April 5. Fontenay to Bouthillier, April 14, Aff. tr. xlr. 229. 


The Cardinal had seized from De Jars a correspondence in 

which the intrigues of some of the Queen's Court against th 

Treasurer were unveiled. He sent the compromising letters 

. to England, that Portland might have evidence be- 


in-between fore him that he was attacked by those who sought 
and Port- to effect a change in the government of France. 1 
In this way Richelieu hoped to secure an ally against 
the suggestions of the Queen on behalf of her mother, which 
were in reality suggestions made in the interests of Spain. 

1 Memoir for Boutard, Ajf. Eti\ xlv. 336. 




IT is impossible to pass from the foreign to the domestic 
politics of 1631 and 1632 without being conscious of the im- 
!6 3 i. mense gulf between them. On the Continent great 
between' problems were presented to the human mind, and 
foreign and great intellects applied themselves to their solution 
politics. with the pen and with the sword. Gustavus, Riche- 
lieu, and Frederick Henry tower above ordinary men. At home 
all things appear tame and quiet. English life seems to be 
unruffled by any breeze of discontent. It is only here and there 
that some solitary person puts forth opinions which, read in the 
light of subsequent events, are seen to be the precursors of the 
storm, only here and there that the legal action of the Govern- 
ment is put forth to settle controversies which, but for those 
subsequent events, would not seem to possess any very great 
importance. It was a time of preparation and development 
for good or for evil, which Charles, if he had been other than 
he was, might have guided to fruitful ends, but in which it was 
impossible for the man whose diplomatic helplessness has just 
passed before us to act with forethought o/ decision. 

One great advantage Charles had. The lawyers began to 

rally to his side. In August 1631 Chief Justice Hyde died, 

August. little regretted, and his place was taken by Richard- 

moffonsr" son. The Chief Justiceship of the Common Pleas 

thus vacated was deservedly allotted to Heath. 

To the surprise of all men the new Attorney-General was 
William Noy. His long Parliamentary opposition was re- 


membered, but the special opinions which had separated him 

from the leaders of that Opposition, like the special 
NoyAttor- opinions of Wentworth, were forgotten. In 1628 he 

had supported Wentworth's conciliatory policy. In 
1629, though he had declared strongly for the Parliamentary 
view of the question of tonnage and poundage, he had opposed 
Eliot's mode of action, and had expressed his dislike of the 
interference of the Commons with the law courts and of their 
claim to make the ministers of the Crown responsible to them- 
selves. A link too between him and the Government was pro- 
bably found in his dislike of Puritanism. He had never made 
pretensions to any grasp of constitutional law, and to one 
whose brain was a mere storehouse of legal facts, it may 
have seemed as easy to quote precedents on one side as on the 
other. Contemporaries appear rather to have amused them- 
selves with the oddity of seeing a man so rugged and uncourtly 
in such a situation, than to have censured him as a turncoat. 
They told how he replied to the King's offer of the post by 
asking bluntly what his wages were to be, and how when Co- 
ventry, seeing him proceed unattended to Westminster Hall 
like an ordinary lawyer, directed a messenger to accompany 
him, he drove the man away, telling him that ' people would 
take him to be his prisoner.' l 

Two months later, Lyttelton, who had also distinguished 
himself on the popular side, accepted the Recordership of the 

City. Though the office was not directly in the King's 
i.ytteiton gift, it was virtually at the disposal of the Crown. 

Other lawyers less distinguished were not long in 
following Lyttelton's example in desisting from an apparently 
hopeless opposition. 

The acceptance of Charles's claims by the principal lawyers 
of the day may no doubt be ascribed, to a great extent, to the 

hope of professional advancement. Other causes 
sitlonofthe may also have been at work with them. Revolu- 
Govemment. t j onar y as Charles's government in reality was, he did 
not profess to have broken with the old constitutional system. 
He took his stand upon rights which had been possessed by 
1 Gresley to Puckering, Oct. 27, Court and Times, ii. 136. 


English kings for centuries, and if he disregarded other rights 
which had been possessed by English Parliaments, he could 
argue that these rights were necessarily in abeyance till 
the Commons consented to resume their proper place in 
the State. In truth there was much to induce a lawyer 
to cast in his lot with Charles rather than with the House 
of Commons. If only the judges could make up their minds 
to avoid challenging the King's claim to supreme head- 
ship of the nation, and the consequences which he deduced 
from it, they were certain to be treated with the highest re- 
spect. Charles's attack upon the independence of the Bench 
was directed against individuals. Though in the persons of 
Crewe and Walter, the whole legal profession had in reality 
been assailed, no other member of the profession need feel 
personally insulted. The House of Commons, on the other 
hand, had proceeded much more undisguisedly. It had openly 
.found fault with a judicial declaration solemnly pronounced in 
the Court of Exchequer, and had summoned the Barons to 
give account of the reasons by which they had been guided. 
It is not strange if many lawyers preferred the silken chains of 
the Court to the iron yoke of a popular assembly not yet con- 
scious of the necessity of submitting to those restraints which it 
was one day to impose upon itself in the hour of victory. 

How far the lawyers who now took the side of Charles were 
led by these considerations we have no means of knowing, 
sir Symonds ^ n ^ e case ^ Sir Symonds D'Ewes, however, we are 
D'Ewes. a bi e to examine the feelings of a man who, without 
being a practising lawyer himself, had received a legal educa- 
tion, and whose Puritanical turn of mind would lead us to 
expect a decided antagonism to the King. A prim and acrid 
young man in his twenty-eighth year, he had made the study of 
legal antiquities the delight of his life, though he kept a human 
corner in his heart for his wife, the little lady who possessed, 
as he boasted, the smallest foot in England. As a proof of 
the tenderness of his affection, he tells how at the time of his 
courtship, he ' could not find leisure once to visit the Court of 
Common Pleas, or continue ' his ' course of reporting law cases, 
but devoted mornings and afternoons to the service and attend- 

16.31 SIR SYMONDS D'EWES. 223 

ance of his ' dearest.' Happily his two passions coalesced 
into one. The lady had so many ancestors that his ' very study 
of records grew more delightful and pleasant than ever before,' 
as he 'often met with several particulars of moment which 
concerned some of those families to which she was heir, both 
His religious ^ their bloods and coat-armour.' The happiness of 
sympathies. t he antiquary's domestic life was sustained and per- 
meated by an abiding sense of religious duty and of religious 
sympathy, not the less real because it ran in narrow and secta- 
rian channels. A Protestant victory on the Continent called 
forth a triumphant outburst of thanksgiving. A Protestant 
defeat thrust him into the depths of despair. 1 

That such a man should not have sided with Eliot's re- 
sistance to the Crown may indeed to some extent be accounted 
for by the smallnes^ of his nature ; but it is also 

His view of . , - , ,. i i 

the late dis- some evidence of the amount of support on which 
solution. R y a i t y was still able to reckon. The day of the late 
dissolution indeed, he pronounced to be 'the most gloomy, 
sad, and dismal day for England that had happened in five 
hundred years;' but he added his opinion that 'the cause of 
the breach and dissolution was immaterial and frivolous, in the 
carriage whereof divers fiery spirits in the House of Commons 
were very faulty and cannot be excused.' They ought never, 
he says, to have attempted to summon the King's officers 
to their bar. The quarrel, he thinks, was the work of some 
' Machiavellian politics, who seemed zealous for the liberty of 
the commonwealth,' but who sought to ' raise dispute between 
the King and his people, as they verily feared that their new 
Popish adorations and cringes would not only be inhibited but 
punished.' 2 

The explanation is ridiculous enough, and looks like the 
suggestion of personal vanity or dislike. What is worthy of 
notice is the decision which the man of precedents and records 
gives against the claim of the House of Commons to seize the 

1 D'Ewes, Autobiography, i. 321. 

2 Selden and Noy seem to be aimed at, Selden as an Arminian, or at 
least an anti-Calvinist ; Noy as an anti-Puritan. The whole passage dis- 
plays complete want of intelligence, and should put the reader on his 
guard against attaching too much importance to D'Ewes's opinion. -'> 


supreme power into its own hands. As yet the lawyers and 
the antiquaries are on Charles's side. A few years later he will 
have alienated both. 

It is no wonder that the lawyers and antiquaries did not 

venture as yet to justify that claim. Even Eliot himself, who 

had done more than any man living to give it pro- 

MonL-cky minencc, hid from his own mind the full significance 

an ' of his actions. In the Monarchy of Man, the political 
and philosophical treatise which was the result of his enforced 
leisure in the Tower, Eliot drew a picture of government as he 
conceived that it ought to be. Of all governments he pro- 
nounced monarchy the best. The King was to rule for the good 
of his subjects, not for his own private advantage. He was to 
conform his actions to the law. But beyond this there was a 
sphere particularly his own. He had to look to 'the safety and 
preservation of the whole.' In this was 'involved a higher care 
and providence for prevention of those evils which the law by 
power or terror cannot reach, . . . the practice and invasion 
of their enemies, or sedition and defection in the subjects, as 
also for the operation of all good which industry and wisdom 
shall invent for the benefit and commodity of the kingdom, 
wherein, though the notions flow from others, princes only can 
reduce them into act.' To all this Charles might fully have 
subscribed. Even when Eliot speaks ot the way in which this 
power is to be exercised, the difference between his view and 
Charles's is rather suggested than expressed. Charles had once 
said, that he was ready to allow to Parliament the right of 
counselling him, not the right of controlling him. Eliot here 
asks for no more. He dwells, indeed, upon the wisdom of 
Parliaments, and upon the safety which lies in taking advice. 
But he distinctly argues that it is ' the true explication of a 
Senate and the duty it sustains, to conceive and form all actions 
and designs,' ' to give them preparation and maturity, but no fur- 
ther, the resolution and production resting wholly in the King.' 1 

Such an argument was no contribution to practical politics. 

1 HarL MSS. 2228. Mr. Forster, in his extracts, took no notice of 
these important words. The whole work has since been published by Dr. 

1631 THE ' MONARCHY OF MAN! 225 

The King's case was that Parliament had come persistently 
and hopelessly to a wrong conclusion, and that it threatened to 
make all government impossible till its own errors had been 
carried into practice. Eliot held that the conclusion come to 
by Parliament had been right, but he did not touch the question 
\vhether in such a case Parliament might in any way force its 
opinions upon the King. 

If, however, Eliot had no particular medicine to offer for 
the sickness of the commonwealth, he could lay his hand, as 
Bacon had laid his hand before him, on the true source of the 
disease. It had all come, he held, because there had been no 
sympathy between the King and his people, because the King 
had not striven to understand their thoughts, or to feel for their 
grievances. To the misfortunes of the State he declared the 
art of government must now be applied, 'so to dispose the 
several parts and members that they may be at peace and amity 
with each other, reciprocally helpful and assistant by all mutual 
offices and respects as fellow-citizens and friends, brethren of 
the same mother, members of one body, nay individually one 
body, one consolid substance ; . . . and likewise to compose 
them to that concord and agreement as they may be at unity 
in themselves, rendering that harmony of the heavens, that 
pure diapason and concent, 1 and in that strength to encounter 
all opposition of the contrary for the public utility and good, 
the conservation and felicity of the whole. For these, because 
no single ability is sufficient, helps and advantages are pro- 
vided,' laws, ' which are a level and direction,' and a council 
' to be aiding and assistant ... a supply of that defect which 
may be in one person by the abilities of more, that by many 
virtues so contracted one Panaretus might be formed, an all- 
sufficiency in virtue and fulness of perfection, the true texture 
and concinnity of a king.' 2 

Eliot had not many more months of life before him. " I 
have these three days been abroad," he wrote to Hampden in 
March, " and as often brought in new impressions of the colds, 

1 Had Eliot seen a copy of Milton's lines At a Solemn Music, supposed 
to have been written in 1630? 3 Man. of Man, p. 67. 



yet both in strength and appetite I find myself bettered by 
1632. the motion. Cold at first was the reason of my sick- 
FJiot's'iast ness > h eat an d tenderness by close keeping in my 
letter. chamber has since increased my weakness. Air and 
exercise are thought most proper to repair it. As children 
learn to go, I shall get acquainted with the air. O the infinite 
mercy of our Master ! Dear friend, how it abounds in us that 
are unworthy of His service ! How broken, how imperfect, 
how perverse and crooked are our ways in obedience to Him ! 
How exactly straight is the line of His providence unto us, 
drawn out through all occurrents arid particulars to the whole 
length and measure of our time ! . . . What can we render ? 
what retribution can we make worthy of so great a Majesty, 
worthy such love and favour t We have nothing but ourselves, 
who are unworthy above all ; and yet that, as all other things, 
is His. For us to offer up that is but to give Him of His own, 
and that in far worse condition than we at first received it, yet, 
so infinite is His goodness for the merits of His Son, He 
is contented to accept This, dear friend, must be the comfort 
of His children ; this is the physic we must use in all our sick- 
ness and extremities ; this is the strengthening of the weak, 
the enriching ot the poor, the liberty of the captive, the health 
of the diseased, the life of those that die, the death of that 
wretched life of sin ! And this happiness have his saints. . . . 
Friends should communicate their joys ; this as the greatest, 
therefore, I could not but impart unto my friend." 

For six months the curtain drops on Eliot's sufferings and 

upon his abounding joyfulness. Then he petitioned the Court 

October, of King's Bench for leave to go into the country for 

He petitions the benefit of his health. Richardson, the new Chief 

for leave to 

goabroai Justice, referred him to the King. Charles answered 
that the prisoner's request was not sufficiently humble. Eliot 
would not save his life by an acknowledgment that he had erred. 
' Sir,' this was the utmost to which he could be drawn, ' I 
am heartily sorry I have displeased your Majesty, and having 
so said, do humbly beseech you once again to set me at liberty, 
that when I have recovered my health I may return back to 
my prison, there to undergo such punishment as God hath 

1632 JELfOT'S LAST DAYS. 227 

allotted unto me.' It was not in Charles's nature to listen to 
such a petition. No hope in this life remained for Eliot. The 
dying patriot had no harsh words for him who was causing his 
death. Anger on account of his own sufferings was not a 
feeling which found entrance into his mind. What he had en- 
dured was to him but part of the great purpose of God working 
out the deliverance of His Church and of the English nation. 
His enforced leisure, as the motto prefixed to The Monarchy 
of Man testified, 1 had proceeded from the hand of God. The 
miser)' in the Tower, as the last petition testified, had been a 
punishment allotted by God. He had fought a good fight, he 
had wrestled hard for his fellow-countrymen, for generations 
yet unborn. As a testimony to those coming generations who 
would take up his work he had prepared his Negotium Poste- 
rorum, the unfinished record of his unfinished labours. One 
thing remained, to bequeath to his own family the memorial of 
his great struggle. When his descendants one after another 
took their place at Port Eliot they must not be allowed to think 
of him only as he was represented in the portrait taken in the 
days of early manhood. The dying man sent for a painter, 
bidding him to reproduce upon canvas the wan, emaciated 
NOV. 27. features which were all the reward of his heroic per- 
Eiiot'sdeath sistency. Then a few days later came the end. On 
November 27 that noble and unconquered spirit passed away 
from amongst living men. 

The life of Gustavus had ended in far other fashion but 
three weeks before. In the main the task of the two men was 
EHot and tne sam e, to defend the living spirit of nations against 
Gustavus. the pressure of misinterpreted legal obligations. 
Charles had heard of the death of Gustavus with a feeling of 
relief. When Eliot died the feeling of relief was tinged with 
rancorous animosity. To Charles, Eliot was but a 
fuses leave factious and unprincipled rebel who had murdered 
the?odyto Buckingham with his tongue, and who would have 
Port Ehot. ,ju e( j ( j own t h e throne itself if it had been in his 

power. He drily refused a request from the son of his deceased 

1 Dens nobis h&c otia. 
Q a 


prisoner, that he might convey his father's mortal remains to rest 
at Port Eliot, where he had been loved and honoured in his 
life. ' Let Sir John Eliot,' wrote the King on the petition, ' be 
buried in the church of that parish where he died.' 

The dust of the first of England's Parliamentary statesmen 
lies unnoticed and undistinguishable amongst that of so many 
others, none more noble than himself. The idea for which he 
lived and died was the idea that the safest rule of government 
was to be found in the free utterance of the thoughts of the re- 
presentatives of the people. He was the martyr, not of spiritual 
and intellectual, but of political liberty. He had confidence 
in the common sense of ordinary citizens, not indeed to govern 
directly, but to call in question those who were guilty of crime 
or mismanagement, and to insist that the direction of affairs 
should be entrusted to purer or abler hands. 

It is not the punishment inflicted, but the character of 
the victim, which constitutes the martyr. Eliot's sufferings 
Valentine nave never been forgotten ; but, till a very recent 
remafn^ 6 tm16 ' posterity had entirely forgotten that two oJ 
prison. hj s companions in misfortune, Valentine and Strode, 
resisted as firmly as he did, the temptation to buy liberty by 
subservience, and remained in prison till the Short Parliament 
was summoned, more than seven years after Eliot's death. 1 

What the House of Commons was to Eliot, the King's 
authority was to Wentworth. He had no confidence in the 

common sense of ordinary citizens. With him, go- 

Wentworth vemment was a question of ability and authority, 
inthe North. It is a c h aste ambition if rightly placed," he said 
afterwards when he was put upon his defence, "to have as 
much power as may be, that there may be power to do the 
more good in the place where a man lives." 2 When his 
enemies brought him to bay, they had much to say about the 
illegality of the Court over which he presided, and of its incom- 
patibility with the ordinary legal system of the country. They 
had no charge to bring of personal injustice against Wentworth, 

1 Rossingham's News-Letter, Jan. 24, 1640. Add. MSS. 11,645, ^ &7* 
- Rash worth, Trial oJ Stra/ord, 146. 


except so far as masterful dealing with those who resisted his 
own authority and the King's might count for injustice. 

It was perhaps not altogether a matter of accident that 
whilst the West and South of England produced the warmest 
The North defenders of the predominance of Parliament, the 
and south, warmest defender of the King's authority should 
come from the North. Beyond the Trent, government by the 
strong hand was far more needed than it was in Hampden's 
Buckinghamshire or Eliot's Cornwall. Old men could still re- 
member the day when the Northern earls burnt the Bibles in 
Durham Cathedral and laid siege to Elizabeth's representative 
in Barnard Castle. Those northern shires were still the strong- 
hold of recusancy, and, except in the south of Yorkshire, where 
a scanty manufacturing population gathered in Leeds, Brad- 
ford, and Sheffield, poverty was great, and the power of the 
gentry was great in consequence. The gentry themselves were 
far less politically advanced than in the South of England, 
and banded themselves together from the consideration of 
social ties and the memory of ancient feuds rather than from 
any difference of ideas on affairs of State. In looking upon 
the rule of the gentry as synonymous with the predominance 
of faction, Wentworth was but transferring to the whole of 
England an inference which might fairly be drawn from the 
condition of his native county. He knew well enough how 
little of public virtue had given him the victory over his rival 
Savile in the electoral conflicts of his earlier life. 

In returning to Yorkshire, therefore, as Lord President of 

the North, Wentworth had to encounter a personal as well as a 

political opposition. One of those who grudged him 

Wentworth f. L b - T1 

insulted by his new honours was Henry Bellasys, the son of Lord 
Fauconberg, a young man of haughty disposition and 
uncontrollable temper. Coming one day into the hall in which 
Wentworth was sitting in full council, he neglected to make the 
customary reverence to the King's representative, and when at 
the close of the business the President left the room, he alone 
of all who were present, kept his head covered. 

Bellasys was sent for by the Privy Council, to answer for his 
offensive conduct. He showed as little good breeding in London 


as he had done at York. He appeared before the Council 
He is with a large stick in his hand, and omitted to kneel, 

brought as the custom then was. He passed his rudeness 
Privy Coun- off lightly. He asserted that he had no intention of 
showing disrespect to the President, but that, being 
in the midst of an interesting conversation, he had not noticed 
that he was leaving the hall. 

The Privy Council took him at his word. All that was 
asked of him was that, in their presence, and again before the 
Council of the North, he should acknowledge that he had not 
intended any disrespect to Wentworth. Upon his refusal to 
May 6. make any public declaration of the kind, he was sent 
He makes t o th e Gatehouse. After a month's imprisonment, 

his submis- 
sion, he expressed himself ready to make the required sub- 
mission if it was clearly understood to be offered to the Lord 
President's place, not to his person. Wentworth, who was 
present, repudiated the wish to take cognisance of any personal 
offence. He had even asked his Majesty, he said, to, excuse 
Bellasys from repeating the acknowledgment at York. As, 
however, the young man had chosen to draw the distinction, 
he could interfere no further on his behalf. Bellasys accord- 
ingly had to make the submission at York as well as in London, 
and received, at some cost to himself, a lesson in politeness. 1 

It would be interesting to know how far Wentworth was 

rewarded by the affection of the poor at the time when he was 

October, flouted by this unmannerly youth ; but only very in- 

Death of direct evidence exists of the feelings of those who 

Lady Went- . 

worth. had most to gain by a prompt and vigorous execution 
of justice. The year 1631 was a year of sorrow to Wentworth. 
In September one of his children died. In October, his dearly- 
loved wife, the sister of Denzil Holies, 'that departed saint 
now in heaven,' to whom his heart turned in his hour of trial 
long afterwards, was taken from him. His affections were as 
strong as his passions, and the stern demeanour which he bore 
in the presence of the many melted into the tenderest attach- 
ment to the few whom he really loved and respected. His grief 
was the more abundant as he was himself the innocent cause of 

1 Council Register, April 6, May 6. Rushivorth, ii. 88. 


his wife's death. One day, when she was-in an advanced stage 
of pregnancy, he stepped from the garden into the room in 
which she was. A large fly, which had settled on his breast, 
spread its wings and frightened the weakly, delicate lady. She 
was prematurely brought to bed of a daughter, at the cost of 
her own life. The widower had many companions in his grief. 
'The whole city' had 'a face of mourning, never any woman 
so magnified and lamented even of those that never saw her 
face.' 1 Such an expression of feeling would hardly have 
been manifested if Wentworth himself had been generally 
unpopular in York. 

Whether Wentworth had succeeded or not in securing the 

regard of the lower and middle classes in the North, he had 

1632. undoubtedly succeeded in securing the regard of the 

Wentworth King. ^ n January 1632 he was called upon, as Lord 

appointed Deputy of Ireland, to face difficulties infinitely more 

Lord Deputy * J J 

of heiand. alarming than any which he was likely to encounter 
in the North of England. As, however, he did not leave Eng- 
land for eighteen months, he had yet time to arouse and to bear 
down opposition amongst the gentry, whose submission to his 
authority he was resolved to enforce. Sir David 
Case of sir Foulis, a Scotchman who had received a large estate 
uhs ' in Yorkshire from the liberality of James, was one of 
those who chafed against the strong hand which held him down. 
He had lately been compelled by Wentworth to pay a sum of 
money which he owed to the Crown, but which he had long re- 
tained in his own possession. Though he was himself a member 
of the Council of the North, he seized every opportunity of 
opposing its President. Wentworth's zeal in exacting the com- 
positions for knighthood enabled Foulis to make common cause 
He attacks V{1 ^ 1 ^ e gentlemen with whom that exaction was na- 
Wentworth. turally unpopular. He said publicly that the people 
of Yorkshire ' did adore the Lord Viscount Wentworth, and 

1 Ferdinando Fairfax to Lord Fairfax, Oct. 8, Fairfax Correspondence, 
ii. 237. Sir G. Radcliffe gives the birth of the child and the death of the 
mother as both occurring in October, and as the mother died before the 
8th, and was on her feet when the accident occurred, the order of events 
follows as given above, though they are nowhere clearly stated. 


were so timorous and fearful to offend his lordship that they 
would undergo any charge rather than displease him ; ' and that 
' his lordship was much respected in Yorkshire, but at Court 
he was no more respected than an ordinary man ; ' and that, 
as soon as his back was turned for Ireland, his place of Pre- 
sidentship of the Council would be bestowed on another man. 
Then came a direct attack upon Wentvvorth's personal honesty. 
Foulis asserted that he had put the knighthood fines into his 
own pocket. A few days later he took a fresh opportunity of 
aspersing the character of the President. Sir Thomas Layton, 
the Sheriff of Yorkshire, received orders from the Exchequer to 
levy the fine on the goods of a Mr. Wyville, who had already 
compounded with Wentworth. Wentworth interfered on 
Wyville's behalf. He sent for the sheriff to come to him at 
York. Foulis urged him to refuse obedience. The President's 
Court, he argued, had no authority over him in the execution 
of his office. It owed its authority simply to the King's Com- 
mission. A mere justice of the peace held office under an Act 
of Parliament. 1 

These words touched the weak point in Wentworth's posi- 
., tion. The Court over which he presided was not 

The Council 

of the North established by any law. It had come into being by 

withdfct Par- J . - __ , 

liamentary an act of prerogative in the days of Henry VIII. 
after the suppression of the Pilgrimage of Grace. Its 
powers had increased gradually, till there was little room left 
for the execution of the ordinary law by its side. 

It may be that such a tribunal was needed in the North. 

A case occurred in Yorkshire in this very year which seems to 

Lord Eure's carr y us back to the Norfolk of the days in which the 

case. Paston Letters were written. Lord Eure, the possessor 

(>f an ancient barony, had fallen into debt, and had executed a 

deed surrendering his estate to feoffees in order that 

they might be sold for the benefit of his creditors. 

When the feoffees, fortified by an order from the Court of 

Chancery, attempted to take possession of the family mansion 

at Malton, he peremptorily refused them admission, garrisoned 

1 Rush-worth^ ii. 215. 


the house, and stood a siege. Layton, who was still sheriff, dis- 
covered that he was absolutely helpless without Wentworth's 
aid. Wentworth at once ordered cannon from Scarborough 
Castle to be brought up. It was not till a breach was made 
by these guns that Lord Eure submitted to the authority of 
the law. 1 

In consequence of the language used by Foulis, Wentworth 
had taken occasion at the Summer Assizes to point out that 
August, the King's demand upon those who willingly paid a 
gpeech V at th ' s composition for omitting to take up their knighthood 
York. was on iy a third or a quarter of the sum which would 

be exacted as a fine by the Court of Exchequer from those who 
refused to compound. The little finger of the law was heavier 
than the loins of the King. 2 

Foulis was left to feel the weight of the loins of the King. 

He attempted indeed to seek an interview with Wentworth, but 

Wentworth refused to discuss with him in private a 

\Ventworth l 

vindicates question which concerned the King's service. " My 
Lord," wrote Wentworth to Carlisle, "you best know 
how much the regal power is become infirm by the easy way 
such have found who with rough hands have laid hold upon 
the flowers of it, and with unequal and swaggering paces have 
trampled upon the rights of the Crown, and how necessary 
examples are (as well for the subject as the sovereign) to retain 
licentious spirits within the sober bounds of humility and fear. 

1 Dominus Arundel c. Dominus Eure. Cfumcery Order Bojks>. 
\VentworthandtlieCcunciloftheNorth to the Privy Council, Oct. 14. 
Mason's affidavit, Nov. 20, .9. P. Dom. ccxxiv. 28 ; ccxxv. 47. 

" Jtttskworth, viii. 150. This is Wentworth's account of the matter. 
It is corroborated by other evidence, and this is exactly what he might 
have been expected to say under the circumstances. At his trial, he was 
charged with having said that the little ringer of the King was heavier than 
the loins of the law. On the whole, I rather think he made use of both 
expressions at different times, the latter perhaps on some occasion when 
obedience had been refused on the ground that some demand was not war- 
ranted by law. The theory of a repetition of words is not usually a desir- 
able one to adopt, but Foulis's evidence at the trial reads as if it referred 
to a different occasion from these assizes, and Wentworth was so fond of 
Scriptural expressions that he might easily have repeated this one. 


And surely if in any other, then in the case of this man, who 
hath the most wantonly, the most disdainfully demeaned him- 
self towards his Majesty and his ministers that is possible, so as 
if he do not taste of the rod, it will be impossible to have his 
Majesty's Council here to be obeyed, and should I say less 
were to betray the trust my master hath honoured me with. I 
hear he cries out of oppression ; so did my Lord Fauconberg 
too your lordship heard with what reason or truth. Believe 
me, this man hath more wit, but his cause is so much the worse 
as he hath notwithstanding less to say for himself ; in this 
nevertheless they are tied by the tails together, that both ot 
them dared to strike the crown upon my shoulders, without 
being at all concerned in my own interest, or having any other 
part to play than such as innocence and patience shall suggest 
unto me. And truly give me leave to assure your lordship I 
have much reason to carry my eyes along with me wherever I 
go, and to expect my actions, from the highest to the lowest, 
shall all be cast into the balance and tried whether heavy or 
light. Content in the name of God ! Let them take me up 
and cast me down. If I do not fall square, and to use a word 
of art paragon, in every point of my duty to my master; nay, 
if I do not fully comply with that public and common protec- 
tion which good kings afford their good people, let me perish, 
and let no man pity me. In the meantime none of these 
clamours or other apprehensions shall shake me or cause me 
to decline my master's honour and service, thereby to please 
or soothe these popular frantic humours ; and if I miscarry 
this way, I shall not even then be found either so indulgent to 
myself or so narrowly-hearted towards my master as to think 
myself too good to die for him. . . . Only this I will protest to 
your lordship in the words of truth, I have been hitherto known 
to this gentleman only by courtesies. That I bear no malice 
to his person, or at all consider my own interests in this pro- 
ceeding, which in truth are none at all, but simply the honour 
and service of his Majesty and the seasonable correcting an 
humour and liberty I find reign in these parts, of observing a 
superior command no further than they like themselves, and of 
questioning any profit of the Crown, called upon by his Ma- 


jesty's ministers, which might enable it to subsist of itself, 
without being necessitated to accept of such conditions as 
others might vainly think to impose upon it. 'Tis true this 
way is displeasing for the present, lays me open to calumny and 
hatred, causeth me by some ill disposed people to be, it may 
be, ill-reported ; whereas the contrary would make me pass 
smooth and still along without noise ; but I have not so learnt 
my master, nor am I so indulgent to my own ease as to see his 
affairs surfer shipwreck whilst I myself rest secure in harbour. 
No, let the tempest be never so great, I will much rather put 
forth to sea, work forth the storm, or at least be found dead 
with the rudder in my hands ; and all that I shall desire is that 
his Majesty and my other friends should narrowly observe 
me, and see if ever I question any man in my own in- 
terests, but where they are only interlaced as accessories, 
his Majesty's service and the just aspect towards the public 
and duty of my place set before them as principals." 1 

1 Wentworth to Carlisle, Sept. 24, Forster MSS., South Kensington 
Museum. No one who has studied Wentworth's letters and speeches can 
fail to notice his habit of repeating or echoing a phrase which he had used 
on some other occasions long before, a habit which in some men might be 
explained as a thoughtless repetition of formulas, but which in a man of 
Wentworth's character, can only be interpreted as arising from the fixity of 
his views on the main principles on which he founded his practice. In the 
extracts given above, two cases of this kind occur. The sentence in the 
last paragraph about the Crown being enabled ' to subsist of itself without 
being necessitated to accept of such conditions as others might vainly think 
to impose upon it, 1 carries us on to the well-known phrase which he used 
in 1637 of ship-money as vindicating ' Royalty at home from under the 
conditions and restraints of subjects,' whilst by the way in which the idea 
is here connected with the proceedings of Foulis, we get a little nearer to 
Wentworth's conception of the danger which he dreaded as likely to arise 
from the power of subjects to enforce upon the Crown a policy which suited 
their own private ends. Another phrase, earlier in the letter, carries us 
back in quite another direction. \Vhert Wentworth speaks of the rights of 
the Crown as trampled on, and declares 'how necessary examples are as 
well for the subject as the sovereign to retain, licentious spirits within the 
sober bounds ot humility and fear, ' we are at once reminded of the call 
made by the writer on the Commons of 1628, to vindicate their 'ancient, 
sober, and vital liberties, by reinforcing of the ancient laws of our an- 
cestors ; by setting such a stamp upon them as no licentious spirit shall 


Having failed to make his peace with Wentworth, Foulis next 
tried to curry favour with Charles, by offering to bring the gentry 

October, of the county to a better temper. He was ready, he 
t F oserle ffers said > ' to lead and persuade others.' He would ' by 
the King. fa example much better the King's service,' whereas 
much harm might be done ' by his disgrace.' Wentworth's 
indignation blazed up at once. With a grand impetuosity he 

Oct 2 swept away the pretensions of any single man to 
Wentworth offer terms to his sovereign. " Lord ! " he wrote 
:sts ' scornfully again to Carlisle, " with ^sop's fly upon 
the axletree of the wheel what a dust he makes ! Where are 
those he can lead or persuade ? . . . Surely if he leave it to 
be considered by the best affected, their verdict will be, his 
Majesty shall contribute more to his own authority by making 
him an example of his justice than can possibly be gained 
by taking him in again. But this is an arrogance grown fre- 
quent now-a-days which I cannot endure. Every ordinary 
man must put himself in balance with the King, as if it were a 
measuring cast betwixt them who were like to prove the greater 
losers upon the parting. Let me cast then this grain of truth in, 
and it shall turn the scale. Silly wretches ! Let us not deceive 
ourselves. The King's service cannot suffer by the disgrace of 
him, and me, and forty more such. The ground whereupon 
government stands will not so easily be washed away*; so as the 
sooner we unfool ourselves of this error, the sooner we shall 
learn to know ourselves, and shake off that self-pride which 
hath to our own esteem represented us much bigger, more 
considerable, than indeed there is cause for." l 

dare hereafter to enter upon them.' Then, too, as here he had declared 
the interest of sovereign and subject to be the same. " I speak truly," he 
had said, " both for the interest of the King and people. If we enjoy not 
these it is impossible to relieve him." Mistaken as Wentworth's idea of 
government was, there is a unity of conception in both its parts. He 
waged war against ' licentious spirits' in the country as in the court. Alas ! 
that one so highly endowed by nature and inspired by such rectitude of 
purpose, should himself have become the ' licentious spirit ' to work unwit- 
tingly what mischief he could in his day of power. 

1 Wentworth to Carlisle, Oct. 24. Printed in the Preface to Bruce'a 
Calendar o( S. P. Dom. 1631-33. 


The best, the highest side of Wentworth's character stands 
here revealed. It had been the crowning evil of the days of 
Wentworth's anarchy which preceded the establishment of the 
against'the Tudor Monarchy, that wealth and high position 
influences of fad enabled men to bargain with the King, and to 

wealth and 

position. grind the faces of the poor by terrifying or influencing 
juries. It was one day to be the evil attendant upon the victory 
of the Parliamentary system, that the territorial aristocracy were 
to make use of the forms of the constitution to fill their own 
pockets at the expense of the nation, and to heap honours and 
rewards upon their own heads. Against such a degradation of 
the functions of the State, Wentworth struggled with all his 
might. The depositary of the national authority, he held, must 
be above all persons and all parties, that he might dispense 
justice to all alike. Unhappily for the great cause which 
Wentworth represented, Charles's course was running countei 
to those national instincts upon which alone national authority 
can be securely based. It is not on Charles alone that the 
blame of failure must be laid. Wentworth himself had too 
little sympathy with the religious and political feelings of the 
prosperous and orderly South to be entitled to speak in the 
name of the whole of England, or to comprehend what a basis 
of authority might be gained by the admission that the com- 
plaints which had found so revolutionary an expression in the 
last Parliament were not without serious foundation. 

Foulis was left to his fate. In the following year a sentence 

in the Star Chamber stripped him of the office which he occu- 

i(J pied under the Crown, fined him 5oo/., and im- 

Sentence prisoned him in the Fleet. He remained in con- 

11 1S ' finement till the Long Parliament came to set him 

free. Wentworth himself had urged the members of the Court 

to show no mercy in a case in which his own personal quarrel 

perhaps seemed to him to be merged in the public interest. 

In addition to his conflict with the country gentlemen, 

1632. Wentworth had to do battle with the courts of law 

Thomas 5 '' at Westminster, which naturally regarded the spe- 

Gower. c j a i jurisdiction of the Council of the North with 

a jealous eye. On one case which arose he felt himself on 


particularly strong ground. Sir Thomas Gower insulted the 
King's Attorney in open court, and then took refuge in London. 
Wentworth's officers met him in Holborn, and attempted in 
vain to arrest him. The Lord President appealed to the Privy 
Council. " Upon these oppositions," he wrote, " and others of 
like nature, all rests are up, and the issue joined, as we con- 
ceive. A provincial court at York or none ? It is surely the 
state of the question, the very mark they shoot at ; all eyes are 
at gaze there, and every ear listening here what becomes of it : 
so as it behoves us to attend it, and clearly to acknowledge 
it before your lordships, that unless this court have in itself 
coercive power, after it be possessed justly and fairly of a cause, 
to compel the parties to an answer and to obey the final decrees 
thereof, all the motions of it become bruta fulwina, fruitless to 
the people, useless to the King, and ourselves altogether unable 
to govern and contain within the bounds of sobriety a people 
sometimes so stormy as live under it, which partly appeared 
in the late business of Malton, where, we dare without vanity 
speak it, had it not been for the little power and credit that is 
yet left us here, the injunction of the Chancery itself had been 
as ill obeyed, as little respected, as either our commission or 
sergeant in Holborn." 

Other questions of jurisdiction arose between the Coun- 
cil of the North and the Courts of Westminster. Persons 
worsted in their suits appealed to the judges of the 
King's Bench, who welcomed their complaints and 
issued prohibitions to stop the execution of their sentences. 
Wentworth utterly refused to pay any attention to these pro- 
hibitions. ' As for the question of jurisdiction of courts,' he 
wrote, 'which indeed little concerns the subject, much more 
the Crown, and which it may restrain or enlarge from time to 
time as shall in his Majesty's wisdom seem best for the good 
government of his people and dominions,' he was well able to 
give satisfaction to the Council. J 

Wentworth was clearly right in holding that it was not fit 

1 Wentworth and the Council of the North to the Privy Council, 
Dec. I, S. P. Dom. ccxxvi. I. 


to leave such matters to be settled by the judges at Westmin- 
T . ,. . ster. Whether exceptional jurisdictions were to be 

Jurisdiction ... 

a question created or maintained was a question to be detei- 
preme e po- mined on broad political grounds rather than upon 

litical power. , , T , , v. 

legal arguments. It was one moreover upon which 
the judges had clearly their own interests at stake, whilst it 
might very well happen that the interests of the community lay 
on the other side. At the present day new courts are created 
and their functions defined, not by the judges, but by Parlia- 
liament, acting as the supreme political authority of the nation. 

The real objection to Wentworth's course lay elsewhere. 
Was the King, acting alone, the proper depositary of that 
where was power ? In other words, was he capable of acting 
tarV'of'that * n t ^ ie rea ^ mterests f tne community, or not ? Did 
power? he maintain the claims of the Council of the North 
as an exceptional jurisdiction, suitable to exceptional circum- 
stances, or was his support of it merely a part of an impatience 
of control, of a desire to cast himself loose from the necessity 
of deferring to the ideas and opinions of his subjects. If the 
latter was the case, the Court at York would stand or fall with 
the good or ill success of Charles's aims in the more populous 
and wealthy parts of the kingdom. 

For the moment, Wentworth secured his wish. In January 

1633 he left the North, to prepare for his removal to Ireland. 

He retained his title of Lord President, and continued 

l6 33- . , . . ...... 

January, to exercise a general supervision over the affairs ,-ot 
lea^es^he the North. The particular question at issue was 
decided in his favour. Gower was sent back to York, 
and expiated his offence by an imprisonment of eighteen months. 
The new in- ^ n March a new set of instructions was issued to the 
structions. Council of the North, giving it the widest and most 
undefined authority, more especially by clothing it with all. the 
powers of the Court of Star Chamber at Whitehall. 1 Went- 
worth afterwards declared that these powers were affirmed to 
be in accordance with the law by the legal advisers of the 
Crown ; but it was evident that they would provoke discussion 

1 Instructions, March 21, Rymcr, xix. 410. 

240 POLITICS AXD RELIGION. en. i.xxi. 

and resistance if ever the existence of the great parent Court 
of Star Chamber at Westminster was seriously attacked. 

In the North, Wentworth had far more to do with the 
opposition of the country gentlemen than with the opposition 
, 632- of the Puritans. In the South, the Government found 
uovernme'nt 6 niore resistance from the Puritans than from the 
in the South, country gentlemen. The spirit of submission to the 
King's authority was widely spread even amongst those who 
shared the feelings of the Parliamentary Opposition. It is true 
that the system of expecting men to assist in. carrying out the 
orders of the Government whilst no pains were taken to consult 
their wishes or to conciliate their prejudices, was one which 
was likely to break down if any strain were put upon it. IJut 
as yet no strain had come, and it seemed as if Charles had no 
danger to fear in this direction. 

An illustration of the bearing of the Government towards 

the gentry is to be found in a proclamation issued in the 

, n2o. summer of 1632, directing all gentlemen to leave 

Piociama- London and to return to their houses in the country. 1 

tion for leav- 
ing London. The judges were expressly ordered by the Lord 

Keeper to enfoice obedience to it at the assizes. The King, 

said Coventry, had power by ancient precedents to 

June 22. genc | t ^ e g en tlemen to their homes. They formed 

the principal part of the county organisation. In their absence 

there would be no one to preside over musters or suppress 

rebellions, no one to perform the duties of the justices of the 

peace, or to supply a higher element in the composition of 

juries. In London they only wasted their time. "Themselves," 

said the Lord Keeper, " go from ordinaries to dicing- 

houses, and from thence to play-houses. Their wives dress 

themselves in the morning, visit in the afternoon and perhaps 

make a journey to Hyde Park, and so home again." As the 

exhortations of the judges did not produce the desired 

stene b on effect, a Mr. Palmer, who had remained in London 

Palmer. during the summer, was brought before the Star 

Chamber. He pleaded in vain that his house in the country 

had been burnt down, and that he had nowhere to live except 

1 Proclamation, Kymer, xix. 374. 


in London. A fine of i,ooo/. was the only answer vouchsafed 
to his reasoning. 1 

If the feeling of the country gentlemen was one of dissatis- 
faction, that of the Puritan clergy was far more bitter wherever 
i6 3I . the hand of Laud reached. As yet, indeed, it did 
lira's in- not reach very far. In his own diocese and in the 
fluence. University of Oxford he was supreme. To the rest 
of England he was able to issue mandates in the King's name ; 
but he could not personally see to their execution, nor could 
he engage other bishops to be very zealous in carrying his 
theories into practice. Practically, therefore, the Puritan was 
safe, excepting in certain localities. Those localities, however, 
the University of Oxford, the City of London, with the counties 
of Middlesex and Essex, were precisely those where Puritanism 
was exceptionally strong, and where a defeat would be most 
ruinous to it. 

If the settlement at which Charles aimed by the issue of 
his Declaration, had been less onesided than it was in reality, 
it could not have secured peace for more than a very short 
time. Even if the contending parties had agreed to forget all 
about predestination, some other question would of necessity 
have arisen, about which they would contend as bitterly. When 
men are divided by opposing tendencies of thought, it matters 
little what is the actual point round which the storm of discus- 
sion gathers. Such a discussion is not to be judged worthy or 
unworthy of notice according to the subject by which it is pro- 
voked, or the temper in which it is conducted, but according 
to the intellectual and moral problems which are raised by it 
There have been times when opposite views of the deepest 
problems of human nature have been called out by a dispute 
about the colour of a vestment, as there have been times when 
questions of infinite importance to mankind have been ap- 
proached by men of the meanest intellects and the most 
wrangling temper. 

In his anxiety to carry out the directions of the Church to 
the letter, Laud soon gave positive offence even to those of the 

1 D'Ewes, Autobiography, ii. 78. 


Puritan clergy who had submitted with more or less willingness 
Bowing in to tne King 3 Declaration. The Canons of 1604 had 
church. enjoined upon congregations the duty of express- 
ing reverence by bowing their heads whenever the name of 
Jesus was uttered. Laud, however, went farther than this. 
He held it right that everyone who entered a church should 
bow in like manner, not, as he explained it, to the altar, but 
towards the altar as the throne of the invisible King in whose 
house the worshipper stood. No general law enjoined this 
practice, but it was inculcated by the special statutes of certain 
churches, and Laud sought to commend it both by exhortation 
and example. 1 

In January 1631 attention was publicly called to Laud's 
views on the subject by his proceedings at the church of St. 
Catherine Cree, in the City of London. It had been lately 
January, rebuilt by the liberality of the parishioners. The 
cration n of Church of England had provided no form for the 
churches. consecration of churches. In Elizabeth's time there 
had been but little church-building, 2 and when the practice 

1 This was the line taken by him at the censure of Prynne, Bastwick, 
and Burton in 1637. "The Government," he then said, "is so moderate 
.... that no man is constrained, no man questioned, only religiously 
called upon, Venite adoremus. Come, let us worship." Works, i. 56. This 
would not, however, apply to officials of a church in which the practice was 
enjoined by the statutes. 

2 " Wherein the first thing that moveth them thus to cast up their 
poison, are certain solemnities usual at the first erection of churches. 
Now, although the same should be blameworthy, yet this age, thanks be to 
God, hath reasonably well forborne to incur the danger of any such blame. 
It cannot be laid to many men's charge at this day living, either that they 
have been so curious as to trouble bishops with placing the first stone in the 
churches they built, or so scrupulous as, after the erection of them, to make 
any great ado for their dedication. In which kind notwithstanding as we 
do neither allow unmeet, nor purpose the stiff defence of any unnecessary 
custom heretofore received ; so we know no reason wherefore churches 
would be the worse, if at the first erecting of them, at the making of them 
public, at the time when they are delivered, as it were, in God's own pos- 

. session, and when the use whereunto they shall ever serve is established, 
ceremonies fit to betoken such intents and to accompany such actions be 
used, as in the present times they have been. " Hooker, Eccl. Pol. Book v, 
xii. I. 

,631 ST. CATHERINE CREE. a.;3 

again came into favour, individual bishops seem either to have 

omitted the ceremony altogether, or to have introduced a form 

, of their own devising. In 1616 Abbot set apart by a 

Precedents r ' 

ofconsecra- special form of prayer the chapel which formed part 
of the buildings which Alleyne, the player, had pre- 
pared at Dulwich for the college which he was about to found. 1 
In 1620 Andrewes consecrated another chapel near South- 
ampton, after a more ornate form of his own composition. With 
Laud, the authority of Andrewes was conclusive. He had re- 
cently been engaged, with the assistance of Buckeridge, in issuing 
to the world a collected edition of Andrewes' sermons, and his 
whole life was an effort to carry out in a hard practical way the 
ideas which cast a gleam of poetry over the unworldly bishop. 
On January 16, accompanied by his official attendants, he 
appeared in full canonicals in Leadenhall Street before the 
Jan. 16. church of St. Catherine Cree, which had just been 
s^crates'the rebuilt. He adopted the form which had been pre- 
Catherine 8 '' P arc d by Andrewes. After two Psalms had been 
( -" ree - sung by all who chose to join in them, he entered 

the church, and kneeling in the doorway, set apart the building 
for the worship of God. Passing from one end to the other 
he pronounced the church, with all its distinctive parts, to be 
consecrated. 2 Then followed other prayers and the Com- 
munion Service, Laud doubtless bowing low ' towards the altar ' 
on the appropriate occasions. 

No contemporary account has reached us to tell what 

1 Wilkins, Cone. iv. 455. 

2 The general consecration was as follows: "God the Father, God 
Ihe Son, and God the Holy Ghost accept, sanctify, and bless this place to 
the end whereunto, according to His own ordinance, we have ordained it, 
to be a sanctuary to the Most High, and a church for the living God. The 
Lord with His favour ever mercifully behold it, and so send upon it His 
spiritual benediction and grace, that it maybe the house of God to him and 
the gate of heaven to us." The consecration of the Communion-table was : 
" Grant us that all they that shall at any time partake at this table the 
highest blessing of all, Thy Holy Communion, may be fulfilled with Thy 
grace and heavenly benediction, and may, to their great and endless com- 
fort, obtain remission of their sins, and all other benefits of Thy passion." 
Andrewes, Minor Works, 316. 

R 2 


impression was made upon the bystanders. Eight years before 
an almost similar ceremony had taken place when Bishop 
Montaigne consecrated the neighbouring parish church of St. 
James' in Aldgate, in the presence of the Lord Mayor and 
aldermen. 1 Archbishop Abbot himself had taken part in the 
service, and there is no rumour of any objection having been 
made by anyone. A London crowd in 1631, however, was not 
in quite the same temper as a London crowd in 1623, and it may 
be that if it were now possible to examine some of those who 
were present at the consecration of St. Catherine Cree, better 
evidence than that of the two witnesses who drew so largely on 
their imagination before the Long Parliament might be found 
to show that some feeling of disapprobation was evinced. 2 

i r 

1 A sketch of the ceremony is preserved in Strype's edition of Stow's 
Survey of London, Book ii. 60. One point objected to in Laud's conduct 
is to be found here. The Lord Mayor and Aldermen presented the keys of 
the church to the Bishop, praying him to proceed to consecration, ' which 
the Bishop receiving, he unlocked and opened the doors which before were 
locked, and entered with the Archbishop, etc., and took possession.' Then 
in the very threshold at his entrance' he 'blessed the place.' Then 
1 going a little forward, with bended knees, and hands towards the east, 
lifted up to heaven, he made a devout prayer, thereby devoting, dedicating 
the place from that day for ever unto God.' 

* Prynne (Cant. Doom, 113) merely gives the story as it was told to the 
Long Parliament, and Rushworth (ii. 77), whom most modern writers have 
followed like sheep, does the same. When it is remembered that they 
both adopted the forged entry in Laud's diary about Leighton's punishment, 
it is plain that they add nothing to the credit of the witnesses. Laud 
( Works, iv. 247) not only denied the statements made, but asserted that he 
had used Bishop Andrewes' form. It is intelligible that the Long Parlia- 
ment should have neglected to send for a copy of that form, but modern 
historians might have been expected to take the trouble of looking at it. 
No part of the charge has been so often repeated as that which relates to 
Laud's mode of consecrating the sacrament. "As he approached the 
communion-table," we are told, "he made many several lowly bowings, 
and coming up to the side of the table, where the bread and wine were 
covered, he bowed seven times, and then after the reading of many prayers, 
he came near the bread, and gently lifted up the corner of the napkin 
wherein the bread was laid, and when he beheld the bread he laid it down 
again, flew back a step or two, bowed three several times towards it, then 
he drew near again and opened the napkin and bowed as before," etc. 


In all matters connected with the construction and repair 

of ecclesiastical buildings Laud is to be seen at his best. In 

our time he would have been in his place as the dean 

Laudsbuild- .. , , , . , , 

ings at St. of a cathedral in need of restoration. His works 
' ns " at his own College of St John's at Oxford were for- 
warded with an ungrudging but measured and businesslike 
liberality which have to this day kept his memory green 
amongst a generation of students which has drifted far from 
his principles in religion and politics. No surveyor of works 
was a better judge of the execution of a contract or the correct- 
ness of an account than the Bishop of London. To such a 
man the ruinous condition of St. Paul's was an eyesore not to 
be borne. He was scarcely settled in his see before he called 
The repair of upon the King to carry out the plans for the restora- 
St. Paul's. t j on o f ^ church which had been made and 
abandoned by his father. In 1631 Charles visited the Cathe- 
dral, and appointed commissioners to gather money for the 
repair of the fabric. The money of the citizens did not flow 
in very freely. After two years only 5,4007. had been col- 
lected. 1 Laud, however, was not the man to allow the under- 
taking to sleep. He brought his own personal influence to 
bear upon the wealthy. He caused the Privy Council to put 
in motion the whole machinery of the justices for the peace 
to gather contributions from every county in England. The 
clergy were the special object of his appeals, and few liked to 
risk their chances of promotion by refusing to carry out his 
wishes. 2 Something, however, must be allowed for the grow- 

Laud did not contradict llie statement in particulars, thinking perhaps that 
he had already said enough to discredit the witnesses. But it is altogether 
incredible, and is worthless except as an illustration of the sort of stuff 
that men were prepared to believe about Laud twelve years afterwards. He 
was not given to histrionics. His observance of formalities was of a more 
sober cast. Besides, if he had done anything like this once, he would have 
been sure to do it again, and I'rynne would not have neglected to inform 
us of his follies. 

1 Ifeylyn, 208. Jones, Carter, and Cooke to the Commissioners, 
May 22, 1633, S. P. Daw. ccxxxix. 20. 

. 2 The existence of this motive is distinctly admitted by Heylyn. 

14 Some men," he says, "in hope of favour and preferment from him, others 


ing zeal for the building and adornment of churches, which was 
only encouraged by the jeers of such Puritans as thought it 
seemly to speak of the grand old fabric as ' a rotten relic,' and 
to argue that ' it was more agreeable to the rules of piety to 
demolish such old monuments of superstition and idolatry than 
to keep them standing.' ' 

Already preliminary steps had been taken. Houses built 

up against the walls not only concealed the architectural 

proportions of the gieat Cathedral, but threw ob- 

Houses 2 ' stacles in the way of a searching investigation into 

removed. ^ causes Q f j ts ^ eca y. r fhe llOUSCS had been 

raised, if Laud is to be trusted, on land belonging to the 
church in defiance of legal right. The Privy Council there- 
fore issued orders for their speedy demolition, offering at the 
same time sufficient compensation for their value. Though 
some of the owners resisted the order, the Council stood firm, 
and before the end of 1632 the long nave stood exposed to 
view in its unrivalled proportions. 2 

Although complaints were aftei wards made that the action 
of the Council was illegal, none of the complainants seem to 
have thought at the time of submitting their grievances to a 
court of law. Indeed it would hardly have been prudent for 
a private person to contest the King's authority in a case so 
manifestly for the public advantage. In our own day powers 
would easily be obtained from the legislature to treat the 
owners of such houses precisely as they were then treated by 
Laud and the Privy Council. 

It was only occasionally that churches required conse- 
cration or repair. The practice of bowing towards 
January, the east gave daily annoyance to the Puritan. The 
re " idea of God having a throne at all except in the hearts 

bowing. Q f men was abominable to j 1 j ni) an( j j t was 
worse to be told that that throne was an altar a name which 

to hold fair quarter with him, and not a few for fear of incurring his dis- 
pleasure, contributing more largely to it than they had done otherwise, if 
otherwise they had contributed a f all." ' Heylyn, 209. 

Council Register, Oct. 28, 1631. M^rch 7, 16, May 9, Aug. 9, 
Aug., 24, 1632. Windebank to the King, Oct. 20, S. P. Dow. ccxxiv AO. 


he directly associated with idolatry and superstition. Prynne, 
as usual, was at once in the thick of the fight. His first 
Controversy antagonist was a certain Giles Widdowes, who had 
p^nelnd written in defence of the practice of bowing, and 
Widdowes. \yhom he scornfully attacked in a book charac- 
teristically entitled Lame Giles, his half ings. In one place 
Widdowes argued that men ought to take off their hats on 
entering a church, because it was ' the place of God's presence, 
the chiefest place of His honour amongst us, where He is 
worshipped with holy worship ; where His ambassadors deliver 
His embassage ; where His priests sacrifice their own and the 
militant Church's prayer, and the Lord's Supper to reconcile us 
to God, offended with our daily sins.' " Ergo," rejoined Prynne, 
triumphantly, " the priests of the Church of England especially 
those who erect, adore and cringe to altars are sacrificing 
priests, and the Lord's Supper a propitiatory sacrifice, sacrificed 
by those priests for men's daily sins." ' 

Prynne was not allowed to have the last word. An Oxford 
writer named Page commenced a reply. It was evident that a 
Ma T controversy about gestures was impending which 
Abbots in- was likely to prove as bitter as the controversy about 
terference. predestination. Abbot imagined that he would be 
allowed, as Archbishop of Canterbury, to say something on the 
matter, and that the principle of abstinence from disputation 
which had been used against his own side would hold good 
against the other. " Good Mr. Page," wrote Abbot's secretary, 
" my Lord of Canterbury is informed that you are publishing a 
treatise touching the question of bowing at the name of Jesus, 
an argument wherein Mr. Widdowes foolishly, and Mr. Prynne 
scurrilously, have already, to the scandal of the Church, exercised 
their pens." To keep this question on foot would be to foment 
' bitterness and intestine contestations.' If Page had not been 
a mere, theorist, living in a cell of his own, he would never have 
touched a subject ' wherein the governors and chief pilots of 
the Church discern more harm and tempest to the Church 
than ' it was possible that one who was ' unacquainted with 

1 Widdowes, The lawless, knecless, schismatical Puritan, 33. Prynne, 
Larnt Gjles, his haltings, 34. 


ecclesiastical estate and the well -ordering of it ' could ' any way 
attain unto.' 

Abbot forgot that he had to reckon with Laud, and that 

Laud had the King at his back. The University of Oxford 

had power to license books for the press whether 

June 22. 

Laud repres- the Archbishop approved of them or not ; and at 
ses Abbot. ^ a University Laud was now supreme. Page was 
therefore encouraged to continue his work. His Majesty, wrote 
Laud, was unwilling that Prynne's ignorant writings should be 
left unanswered. 1 

r The encouragement to carry on the controversy 

Party feeling was likely to be more bitterly felt, as Laud was at 
at x or . ^ e ver y |.j me en g a g e (j j n enforcing the King's Decla- 
ration at Oxford with the utmost strictness. Party feeling was 
running high in the University. Preachers, not content with as- 
serting their own views on the forbidden topic of predestination 
proceeded to vilify their antagonists as wantonly promulgating 
heretical opinions for the sake of Court favour. The Vice- 
Chancellor's authority was openly set at naught, and he found 
no support in Convocation, which was still predominantly Cal- 
vinistic. Charles himself intervened, and summoned 

Aug. 23. 

The King the offenders before him at Woodstock. He ordered 
interferes. ^ p reacners w hose sermons had been complained 
of to be expelled from the University, and the proctors who 
had failed to call them td account to be deprived of their 
offices. 2 

Silence on controverted points of doctrine combined with 
encouragement to argue on one side alone of ceremonial dis- 
pute was the arrangement favoured by the Govern- 

Meaning of T . , .-,, , j T j 

the course ment. It is easy to see how Charles and Laud came 
taken. ^ Q approve of such a. solution of their difficulties. On 

the one hand, they regarded speculative theology as a mere 
intrusion on religion, and they had no confidence in the attain- 
ment of truth by the hot conflict of thought with thought. On 
the other hand, they were unable to understand that a cere- 
mony which conveyed to their own minds a pious or innocent 

1 Baker to Page, May 31. Laud to Smith, June 22, Land's Wyks, v. 39. 
* Laud's Works, v. 49-70. 

1631 LAW AND OPINION. 349 

impression, might be associated in the minds of others with 
thoughts which were neither pious nor innocent. The result was 
none the less deplorable. All that had been gained by opposi- 
tion to the doctrinal intolerance of the Commons was thrown 
away. Under the show of impartiality in questions of doctrine, 
and doubtless with the firm conviction that impartiality had 
been actually attained, Charles had deliberately assumed the 
position of a partisan. Whatever vantage-ground he possessed 
in 1629 was surrendered in 1631. 

Partial, however, as Laud's administration was, he justified 
it to himself as an appeal to law against caprice. On a subject 

the most difficult to confine within legal restrictions, 
of con- the most spiritual and undefinable of all objects of 

human thought, he appealed simply to the strictest 
possible interpretation of the law of the Church. Even when 
the Prayer-book had been drawn up, and still more when the 
Canons had been voted, the ecclesiastical legislature had been 
very far from representing the currents of opinion which swept 
over the ecclesiastical body. It was notorious that in Laud's 
own day the contrast between the opinion of Convocation and 
the opinion of the religious laity was still more striking. This 
contrast was no matter to Laud. It was no part of his belief 
that law ought in any way to conform itself to opinion. It was 
enough for him that it existed. The Canons and the Common 
Prayer-book were to be accepted by all the clergy. Those who 
objected had no such resource as they have at the present day. 
They could not pass from the church to the chapel. They 
could not address their countrymen on religious subjects even 
in private houses. They must conform to the least tittle, or 
abandon their position as teachers. 

The utmost that can be said is that if Laud's pressure was 
unremitting, it was not spiteful or violent. " Concerning some 

ministers," wrote a Puritan clergyman who had com- 
the Puritan plied with Laud's demands, "I am a witness of your 

patient forbearing them, giving them time again and 
again to consult thereabout with what conformable ministers 
they themselves thought best." l Others, however, complained 
1 BaKer to Laud, Oct. 19, S. P. Dom. ccii. 3. 


bitterly at the sudden tightening of the string. " It is no 
,6 32 . easy matter," wrote the despairing Vicar of Braintree. 

January. to reduce a numerous congregation into order that 
hath been disorderly this fifty years, and that for these seven 
years last past hath been encouraged in that way by all the re- 
fractory ministers of that country. ... If I had suddenly and 
hastily fallen upon the strict practice of conformity, I had un- 
done myself and broken the town to pieces. For upon the 
first notice of alteration many were resolving to go to New 
England, others to remove elsewhere, by whose departure the 
burden of the poor and charges of the town had grown in- 
supportable to those who should have stayed behind. By my 
moderate and slow proceeding I have made stay of some, and 
do hope to settle their judgment and abode with us, when the 
rest that are inexorable are shipped and gone." l 

Laud, in short, was a lawyer in a rochet, and that not a 
lawyer of the highest sort. He could understand the necessity 
of conducting life in accordance with fixed rules. He 
respect for could not understand that all existing rules were but 
e<?aity ' the product of fallible human intelligence perpetually 
needing correction, perpetually halting in its effort to grasp the 
infinite life and diversity of nature. 

Above all, the ill-feeling which his proceedings aroused was 
unintelligible to Laud. He could not endure to be misnnder- 

May 6. stood, or perceive that it was in the nature of things 
Bernard's that his own misrepresentations of others should be 

sermon at . 

Cambridge, returned in kind. One of those who paid the penalty 
for his too vivid indignation was Nathaniel Bernard. He was 
not a man of either reticence or prudence. Three years before 
he had startled his congregation by praying, " O Lord, open 
the eyes of the Queen's Majesty, that she may see Jesus Christ, 
whom she hath pierced with her infidelity, superstition, and 
idolatry." He now, in preaching at Cambridge, attacked those 
who went about to deprive the nation of God's ordinances for 
His public worship ; " whereby," he added, " we may learn what 
to account of those amongst ourselves if any such be, which is 

1 Collins to Duck, Jan. 18, 1632, S. P. Dom. ccx. 41. 


better known to you than me who endeavour to quench the 
light and abate the glory of Israel by bringing in their Pelagian 
errors into the doctrine of our Church established by law, and 
the superstitions of the Church of Rome into our worship of 
God ; as high altars, crucifixes, and bowing to them, that is, in 
plain English, worshipping them, whereby they symbolise with 
the Church of Rome very shamefully, to the irreparable ship- 
wreck of many souls who split upon the rock." 1 

Bernard was fined and imprisoned by the High Commission. 
Of that Court I,aud was the ruling spirit. Yet it must not 
The High be forgotten that Abbot was constantly in attend- 
Commission. ancej an d was almost as energetic as Laud in his 
enforcement of conformity. In the only case affecting cere- 
monial in the records which have been preserved, and which 
reach from October 1631 to June 1632,2 Abbot declared his 
opinion to be strongly against the right of certain parishes in 
Matrimonial London to place seats above the communion-table, 
cases. j n questions relating to marriage the court struggled, 

against every kind of opposition, to uphold the standard of a 
Aiington's high morality. The case of Sir Giles Alington, who 
case. married his niece, was doubtless exceptional ; but it 

needed all Laud's firmness to put an end even to this scandal. 
Alington appealed to the Court of Common Pleas, and the 
judges of that court issued a prohibition to stay 
proceedings. The High Commission set the inter- 
ference at naught. "If this prohibition," said Laud at the 
Council table, " had taken place, I hope my Lord's Grace of 
Canterbury would have excommunicated throughout his pro- 
vince all the judges who should have had a hand therein. For 
mine own part, I will assure you, if he would not, I would have 
done it in my diocese, and myself in person denounced it both 
in Paul's church and other churches of the same against the 
authors of so enormous a scandal to our Church and religion." 
In clerical circles the bishop's firmness gave the highest satis- 
faction. " I know not," wrote Meade from Cambridge, " what 
you will say in the country, but we say here it was spoken like 

1 Prynne, Canterbury's Doom, 363. 

2 Harl. MSS. 4130, and Raivlinson MSS. 128. 


a bishop indeed." 1 Alington's fine was i2,ooo/., with a bond 
of 2,ooo/., to be forfeited if he ever lived again with his niece 
as his wife. For him, at least, there was little mercy, and he 
actually paid no less than io,oooZ. of his heavy fine, a sum 
which was placed at the disposal of the Queen. 2 

The court showed a special consideration for the misfor- 
tunes of injured women. " The law of England," as an advo- 
cate pleading before it said, " is a husband's law," and many a 
time the commissioners interfered to enforce a separate main- 
tenance for the victim of infidelity or brutality. 

Excepting so far as the suppression of lectureships was con- 
cerned, there does not seem to have been any thought at this 
time of treating ordinary Puritanism as a crime ; but anything 
Cases of An- approaching to Antinomianism was put down with a 
tinomianism. strong h an( j. No man was to preach the doctrine of 
free grace in such a way as to lead his hearers to suppose that 
the commission of sin was a matter of indifference. A fanatic 
named Richard Lane was imprisoned for saying that through 
Christ's grace he was above sin and needed no repentance, and 
clergymen who maintained the same opinion were deprived of 
their livings. Private meetings for prayers or preaching were 
strictly forbidden. " We took another conventicle ol 

June. * 

The Separa- separatists," wrote Laud merrily, " in Newington 
Ingto'n N " Woods on Sunday last, in the very brake where the 
Woods. King's stag should have been lodged for his hunting 
the next morning." 3 Those who were captured were sturdy 
representatives of a sturdy sect Brought before the High 
Commission, they refused to take the ex-offitio oath to answer 
whatever questions might be proposed to them. They said that 
they owed obedience to none but to God and the King, and 
those who were lawfully sent by him. " You do show your- 
selves," said Abbot, " the most ungrateful to God and to his 
Majesty the King, and to us the fathers of the Church. If you 

1 Meade to Stuteville, May 20, Court and Times, ii. 119. 

z Pardon to Alington, July 14, Sign Manuals, xi'.i. 32. This, however, 
was only intended to conceal the secret payment tc the Queen, as appears 
from a release to SirT. Hatton. Patent Rolls, 13 Charles I. Part 33, No. 5. 

* Laud to Windebank, June 13, S. P. Dom. ccxviii. 46. 


have any knowledge of God, it hath come through or by us or 
some of our predecessors. We have taken care, under God, 
to give milk to the babes and younglings, and strong meat to 
the men of understanding. You have the word of God to feed 
you, the sacraments to strengthen you, and we support you by 
prayer. For all this what despite do you return us. You call 
us abominable men, to be hated of all ; that we carry the 
mark of the Beast, that we are his members. We do bear this 
patiently, not because we have no law to right us, but because 
of your obstinacy. But for the dishonouring of God and dis- 
obeying of the King, it is not to be endured. When you have 
reading, preaching, singing, teaching, you are your own minis- 
ters. The blind lead the blind, whereas his Majesty is God's 
Vicegerent in the Church. The Church is nothing with you, 
and its ministers not to be regarded ; and you run into woods 
as if you lived in persecution. Such an one you make the 
King, to whom we are so much bound for his great care for 
the truth to be preserved among us, and you would have men 
believe that he is a tyrant ; this besides your wickedness, un- 
thankfulness, and ungraciousness towards us the fathers of 
the Church. Therefore let these men be put, two and two, in 
separate prisons." 

The idea of tolerating separate worship had not occurred 
to either party in the Church. Until that idea had made its 
way, the difficulties of governing the Church were al- 
of 'church* most insuperable. If the rule of the law were strictly 
ent ' enforced, many earnest and conscientious preachers 
would be put to silence. If it were laxly enforced, congrega- 
tions would suffer from the mere vagaries of eccentric clergy- 
men. It is noticeable that the only important case of irregular 
teaching, not Antinomian, which was brought before the court 
during the eight months over which the report extends, was 
Case of tnat f John Vicars, vicar of Stamford, prose- 
v 1C ar. cuted, not by the bishop of the diocese, but by the 
inhabitants of the parish, with the town clerk at their head. 
Vicars had invited persons from other parishes to attend his 
sermons in words not complimentary to their own clergy. 
' They must have a care,' he said, ' to hear that minister that 


preached the Word, and not those who brought chaff.' His own 
preaching seemed very like chaff to many of his congregation. 
He had a theory that Christmas Day ought to be kept in Sep- 
tember, He had peculiar views about married life, which he 
enunciated with such plainness of speech as to give offence 
even in that plainspoken age. He held meetings of prepara- 
tion before the administration of the Communion, and in his 
sermons he spoke scornfully with irritating emphasis, of those 
who abstained from attending them. He told his congregation 
that it was a sin to receive the Sacrament except upon the 
Sabbath-day. He had warned them that persecution was at 
hand. A specimen of the objurgations with which he ventured 
to interlard the exhortation in the Communion Service was 
given : " Thou son of the devil," he cried out to one who pre- 
sented himself before him, " thou art damned and the son of 
damnation. Get thee to the devil Take hell for thy portion." 
The High Commission does not deserve blame for removing this 
man from his ministry at Stamford. He was, however, upon 
promise of obedience, subsequently reinstated in the ministry, 
but not in his cure. 1 

On the whole, it would seem that as long as Abbot lived 

there was nothing done by the Court of High Commission 

likely to give offence to moderate men of either 

raTwse^in P artv - We must look elsewhere for the two great 

the Star ecclesiastical processes of the day, and even those 

Chamber * 

and EX- processes aimed not so much at the suppression of 
any particular opinions as at the gathering up of all 
authority in the Church into the hands of the central govern- 
ment. Laud was rather sharpening the instrument of power 
than making use of it in any special direction. 

In 1629 Henry Sherfield returned home to Salisbury from 
the Parliament in which he had represented the city with no 
i6 kindly feeling towards bishops or ceremonies. He 
at was recorder of the borough, and a member of the 
. vestry o f t j ie p ar i s h o f St Edmund's. Like the great 
majority of the laity of his day, he had no objection to bring 

1 S. P. Dom. cclxi. fol. 5 b, 295 b. 


against the services of the Church as he had been in the habit 
of seeing them carried out that is to say, with some omissions. 
He had, however, been accustomed to kneel at the reception 
of the Communion, and had been active in punishing separatists. 
Together with his fellow-vestrymen he had a special grievance 
The painted to complain of. The windows of the church were of 
St n iT s at painted glass, and one of them contained a represen- 
mund's. tation of the First Person of the Trinity as an old 
man measuring the world with a pair of compasses, and raising 
Eve out of the side of Adam. 

It was easy to take offence at such a picture ; and, though 
to most persons entering the church it was probably a mere 
piece of coloured glass and nothing more, there were relics of 
old mediaeval superstitions still floating about under the shadow 
of the most graceful of English cathedrals. One Emily Browne 
bowed before the window as she passed to her seat. " I do 
it," she replied to Sherfield's remonstrance, " to my Lord God." 
" Why," said the Puritan lawyer, " where is He ? " " In the 
window, is He not ? " was the answer he received. 
Jan. 16. In February 1 630 Sherfield brought the matter 
giveorde7s before the vestry, and the vestry directed him to 
to remove it. re move the painting and to replace it by plain white 
glass. They did not, however, care to place on record the real 
motive of their decision. "The said window," they explained, "is 
somewhat decayed and broken, and is very darksome, whereby 
such as sit near the same cannot see to read in their books." l 

The affair was not long in reaching the ears of Dave nan t, the 
bishop of the see. Davenant was regarded as the theologian 
The bishop f ^ e Calvinistic party in the Church, and had been 
objects. one o f the representatives of the King of England 
at the Synod of Dort. Nevertheless, he at once sent for the 
churchwardens of St. Edmund's, and forbade them to carry out 
the order of the vestry. 

Accordingly no action was taken in the matter. About 
Michaelmas, Sherfield was called by business to the neigh- 
bouring village of Steeple Aston. The vicar showed him over 
the church. The windows glowed with ' painted images and 

1 Order of the Vestry in Hoare's History of Wiltshire, vi. 371. 


pictures of saints/ Not far off a knight lately dead had left in 
his will a sum of money to put up windows repre- 
Sherfieid's senting 'works of mercy.' The mischief, as Sherfield 
Steeple considered it, was plainly spreading. " For my part, ' 
Aston. ^ e S3i ft to t k e v j car> j do not iik e these painted 

windows in churches. They obscure the light, and may be a 
cause of much superstition." He then spoke of the window at 
St* Edmund's, and complained of the bishop's interference. 1 

Sherfield returned to Salisbury with his mind made up. He 
had personally received no official notice of the bishop's in- 
hibition, and he resolved to set it at defiance. Ob- 


He breaks taining the key of the church from the sexton's wife, 
the window, j^ wnt j n a j onC) jo^gd t h e door behind him, climbed 

up on the back of a seat, and dashed his stick through the 
glass. In his vehemence he lost his balance and fell to the 

A Star Chamber prosecution was the result. The case was 
postponed till February i633. 2 It was Noy's first appearance 
j6 as Attorney-General in an important State prosecu- 
Keb. 8. tion. He said something to show that Sherfield had 
the'star 510 acted independently of the vestry's order; but the 
chamber. main scope of his argument went to urge that a 
vestry had no power to make such an order at all. It might 
make or mend seats, or place a reading desk in a more con- 
venient position ; but it was not in its power to carry out a 
change which implied a special religious view without the 
bishop's consent. If every vestry could deal at pleasure with 
the fabric of the building in its charge, one church might be 
pulled down because it was in the form of a cross, another 
because it stood east and west. One man might hold that to be 
idolatry which was not idolatry to another. These differences 
of opinion would engender strife, and strife would lead to se- 
dition and insurrection. 

The Star Chamber unanimously concurred in Noy's view 

1 Webb's Deposition, Jan. (?) 1631, S. P. Dorn. clxxviii. 58. 

* The date 163^, which even Mr. Bruce accepted (S. P. Dom. ccxi. 20) 
is clearly wrong. The fact that Windebank took part in the sentence is 
decisive against it. 


of the case ; but there was much difference of opinion as to 
The sen- tne penalty to be inflicted. The lawyers Coventry, 
tence. Heath, and Richardson were on the side of leniency; 

the bishops Laud and Neile were on the side of harshness. 
The sentence was at last fixed at 500?. and a public acknow- 
ledgment of the fault. 

Though on the general question Noy's argument was un 
answerable, the objections of the lawyers in the court went 
deeper than the lowering or raising of a fine by a 

The bishops , , , , , T ,, , , , . 

and the few hundred pounds. It was well that the authority 
to remove such a window as had been removed by 
Shei field should be in the hands of persons of larger views than 
the members of a parish vestry were likely to be ; but it would 
be to little purpose to assign this authority to the bishops, if the 
bishops were to have as little sympathy as Laud had with the 
dominant religious feelings of the country. Works of art are 
worth preserving, but the religious sentiments of the wor- 
shippers demand consideration also. It was evident from the 
language employed by Coventry and the Chief Justices that, 
though they objected to the way in which Sherfield's act had 
been done, they shared his dislike of the representation which 
had given him offence. Laud was so occupied with his de- 
testation of the unruly behaviour of the man that he had no 
room for consideration whether his dislike was justifiable or not. 
He treated the reasonings of the lawyers as an assault upon the 
episcopal order. He told them that the authority of the bishops 
was derived from the authority of the King, and that if they 
attacked that, they would fall as low as bishops had once fallen. 
Yet though Laud carried his point in referring all questions re- 
lating to the ornamentation of churches to the bishop of the 
diocese, the objection against the figure which had attracted 
such notice at Salisbury was too widely felt to be treated with 
contempt. Charles ordered Bishop Davenant to see that the 
broken window was repaired at Sherfield's expense, but to take 
care that it was repaired, as the vestry had before ordered, 
with white and not with coloured glass. Before long Sherfield 
made due acknowledgment of his fault to the bishop, but he 



died not long afterwards, leaving the bill to be paid by his 
relatives. l 

A few days afterwards a case of still greater importance was 
decided by the Court of Exchequer. In the beginning of the 
1625. re ig n j four citizens of London, four lawyers, and four 
forlmpS" Puritan clergymen of note had associated themselves 
priations. f or the purpose of doing something to remedy the 
evil of an impoverished clergy. They established a fund by 
means of voluntary contributions, from which they bought up 
impropriate tithes, and were thus enabled to increase the sti- 
pends of ministers, lecturers, and schoolmasters. Naturally the 
persons selected for their favours were Puritans, and Laud 
had early marked the feoffees for impropriations, as they were 
called, for destruction. 

The first to lift up his voice publicly against them was 
Peter Heylyn, Laud's chaplain and future biographer. In a 
1630. sermon preached at Oxford in 1630, he said that the 
Hearts' enem y na -d been sowing tares. The feoffees were 
sermon. 'chief patrons of the faction.' They preferred those 
who were ' serviceable to their dangerous innovations.' In 
time they would 'have more preferments to bestow, and 
therefore more dependencies, than all the prelates in the 
kingdom.' 2 

Laud took the matter up warmly. At his instigation, Noy 
exhibited against the feoffees an information in the Exchequer 
Chamber, a court of equity in which the Lord 
Noy's infer- Treasurer and the Chancellor of the Exchequer sat 
as judges by the side of the barons. The charge 
against the feoffees was that they had illegally constituted 
themselves into a body holding property without the sanction 
of the King. An argument of more general interest was that, 
instead of employing the money collected in the permanent 
increase of endowments, they had paid the favoured ministers 
or schoolmasters by grants revocable at their own pleasure. 

1 Coke to Davenant, Feb. 15, Melbourne MSS. State Trials, iii. 519. 
Nicholas to E. Nicholas, written early in 1634, not in 1632, as calendared. 
S. P. Dom. ccxiv. 92. Narrative, March 15, 1633, S. P. Dom. cxxxiii. 89, 

2 Heylyn, Cyfri&nus Anglicus, 199. 


They had already diverted the tithes of Presteign in Radnor- 
shire to provide lectures for a church in the city of London, 
where the lecturers would be obliged to conform their teaching 
,6 33 . to the opinions of their paymasters. The court de- 
rhe e sen"' creed the dissolution of the feoffment, and directed 
tence. t h at ^\\ t } ie patronage in their hands should be placed 

at the King's disposal. l 

If it were possible to look upon this sentence apart from 
the circumstances of the time, it would not be difficult to adduce 
arguments in its favour. Of all modes of supporting a clergy 
yet invented, their maintenance by a body of capitalists living 
for the most part at a distance from the scene of their ministra- 
tions, is, in all probability, the worst. There are, however, times 
when the most irregular manifestations of life are welcome, and 
in making his attack upon the feoffees Laud was not merely 
assailing the special system under which they acted, but was 
taking one more step in the work of suppressing a form of be- 
lief which was deeply rooted in the heart of the nation, and of 
setting aside the life and energy of individual initiative in favour 
of the cold hard pressure of official interference. The action of 
Charles, of Laud, and of Wentworth was all of a piece. In- 
stead of finding their work in the control and guidance of the 
irregular and often ignorant action of individuals and corpora- 
tions, they sought to substitute their own ways of thought for 
those of the generation in which they lived. They forgot that 
they too were but fallible mortals, and that if they had been 
possessed of infallibility itself, they would have been the first 
to learn that the path to excellence lay in the struggle and the 
aspiration, not in mute and unresisting obedience to the word 
of command. 

The first two names on the list of the feoffees, those of 
William William Gouge and Richard Sibbes, offered sufficient 
Gouge. guarantees that no destructive influences were here 
at work. Gouge's sermons at Blackfriars were preached in the 

1 Exchequer Decrees, iv. 88. The decree is carefully deleted by pen- 
strokes by order of the Lords in Parliament, March 3, 1648. See Bills 
and Answers, Charles I. London and Middlesex, No. 533. The receipts 
had been 6,36i/. 6s. id. 

S 2 


presence of an overflowing auditory, of very varying character. 
It was from his church that Leighton had stepped forth when 
he was seized by the pursuivants. It was in his church that 
Lord Keeper Coventry learned to do judgment and justice. 
Merchants, lawyers, scholars flocked to hear him. Strangers 
did not consider their business in London to be finished till 
they had heard the lecture at Blackfriars. Gouge's life was a 
constant stream of benevolent labour, and many a man in the 
next generation could bear witness that the first seeds of god- 
liness and virtue had been sown in his mind by one of his 
sermons. 1 Gouge did his best to satisfy Laud. He received 
his admonitions on account of some irregularities in the ad- 
ministration of the Communion with meekness. He detested, 
as he declared, those who despised authorities. 2 

Sibbes was a still more notable personage in the ranks of 
the moderate Puritans. The son of a Suffolk wheelwright, 
Richard ne ^ a ^ been sent to a neighbouring school. His 
Sibbes. father grudged the expense, and fetched him home, 
saying that he would rather see him hammering at the forge 
than conning his book. The village clergyman and the village 
lawyer, however, had their eyes upon the hopeful boy, and sent 
him to Cambridge to be educated, making up by the help of 
friends the scanty sum which they had shamed the wheelwright 
into allowing him. 

Ever since the days of Cartwright there had been a strong 
Puritan element at Cambridge. Perkins had handed on the 
Sibbes at torch of religious oratory to Bayne, and Bayne was 
Cambridge, the spiritual father of Sibbes. Sibbes early became 
a preacher in London. Then he returned to Cambridge. In 
1609 he was chosen College preacher of St. John's, and in 
the next year was invited to undertake the weekly 
Trinity lecture at Trinity parish church. In his hands the 
Trinity lecture became a great power in Cambridge. 
Men like Cotton, afterwards the light of New England, and 
Goodwin, the noted Independent divine, traced their spiritual 
generation to Sibbes. " Young man," he said to Goodwin, "if 

1 Clarke, Lives of Ten Eminent Divines, 95. 

2 Gouge to Laud, Oct. 19, 1631, S. P. Dom. ccii. 3. 


you ever would do good, you must preach the gospel and the 
free grace of God in Christ Jesus." 

The free grace of God, the loving kindness of a merciful 
Saviour looking down in pity upon each individual soul, and 
bidding it be of good cheer, was the message which 
Sibbes delivered to men. In 1615, for some unex- 
plained reason, he was deprived of his lectureship. 1 In 1617, 
i6, 7 . at Yelverton's suggestion, he was chosen preacher 
shiTof"" to Gray's Inn. There, men bearing the first names 
Gray's inn. in England, Bacon, it may be, himself dropping in 
amongst his old companions, flocked to hear him. If the worth 
of a man is to be known by those who combine to honour him, 
Sibbes needs no further testimony. In 1626 he was chosen, 
l626 . at Usher's recommendation, Provost of Trinity Col- 
Sibbesre- We, Dublin. Almost at the same moment he was 

turns to ' 

Cambridge, elected Master of Catherine Hall. The choice be- 
tween his old University and a removal to Ireland was soon 
made, and he took his place once more at Cambridge. 2 By 
the statutes of Gray's Inn his preachership was vacated by 
the acceptance of office elsewhere ; but the lawyers would not 
spare him, and he was allowed, by a special Act, to hold both 
preferments at once. Cambridge submitted once more to the 
charm of his fervid eloquence. St. Mary's pulpit was thrown 
open to him. The church was so thronged that the parish- 
ioners had to draw up regulations to prevent their being thrust 
out of their seats by strangers. 

Such a man was sure to come into collision with the Court. 
In 1627, together with Gouge and two others, he issued a cir- 
cular letter asking for alms for the exiles from the 
for the 10 " Palatinate. The four were summoned to the Star 
Palatinate. Q iam ber, and were reprimanded for this act of in- 
vitation to charity, which seemed likely to be more favourably 
received than the forced loan had been. 

1 Dr. Grosart, from whose biography, prefixed to his edition of Sibbest 
Works, I extract these particulars, suggests that Laud had something to do 
with it, an evident anachronism. 

2 Trinity College chose Joseph Meade to succeed him, and then upon 
his refusal, William Bedell, afterwards the celebrated bishop. Sir J. 
Ware's Diary, Crowcombe Court MSS. 


Then came the trouble about the impropriations. Though 
Laud and the King might look askance at Sibbes's work, they 
X 6 33> could not charge him with being a disturber of the 
Becomes peace. In November, Charles, anxious perhaps to 
Trinity. show that he had no personal grudge against him, 
presented him to the Vicarage of Trinity, and about the same 
time the grateful Master of Catherine Hall contributed some 
glowing lines to a collection of Latin verses written in honour 
of the birth of the King's second son, the future James II. 

Such words were not mere flattery. Although there were 
doubtless many things in the Church which Sibbes regarded 
His letter to w ' tn g rave dissatisfaction, he had no more wish than 
Goodwin. Gouge to cast off the ties which bound him to his 
countrymen. He dissuaded Goodwin from separating himself 
from the Church of which he was a minister in the most ur- 
gent terms. That Church, he wrote, had all the marks of a 
true Church of Christ. It had ' begot many spiritual children 
to the Lord.' As for ceremonies, even if it were admitted that 
they were evil, it would be a remedy worse than the disease to 
tear the Church in sunder on their account. He begged his 
correspondent to forsake his 'extravagant courses, and sub- 
missively to render ' himself 'to the sacred communion of this 
truly evangelical Church of England.' 

That Church would never remain united unless its rulers 
Necessity of knew how to conciliate such moderate opponents, 
conciliation. They \vould have to conciliate others too, whose minds 
were cast in a very different mould. They would have to find 
room by the side of Gouge and Sibbes for Nicholas Ferrar 
and George Herbert. 

Nicholas Ferrar was the younger son of a wealthy London 

merchant. Having received the rite of confirmation when 

only five years old, as the custom then was, the child 

Childhood ,. , . , , 

of Nicholas slipped in unnoticed on a second occasion, and was 
twice confirmed. " I did it," he said, " because it 
was a good thing to have the bishop's prayers and blessing twice, 
and I have got it." He was a studious youth, loving above all 
other books the Bible, and Foxe's Book of Martyrs. After a 
course of study full of promise at Cambridge, he travelled on 


the Continent, where he attracted attention by the quickness 
of his observation and the retentiveness of his memory. At 
his return he found employment under the Virginia Company, 
and drew upon himself the notice of the leading statesmen of 
l623 . the day by the vigour and ability with which he 
Defends the defended its charter when it was called in question 


Company, m 1623. Elected to Parliament in the next year, he 
took part in the impeachment of Middlesex, who had roused 
his indignation by his attack upon the Company. 

It was Ferrar's last appearance in public life. He took no 
pleasure in the political and religious conflict which was evi- 
dently impending when Charles ascended the throne ; and the 
plague which devasted London in that year gave the final im- 
press to a determination which had long been floating in his 
mind. His widowed mother bought the manor of Little Gid- 

l625< ding in Huntingdonshire. The once smiling fields 
Purchase of had been long ago converted into pasture land, and 

Little Gid- . 

ding. the cottages of the tillers of the soil had disappeared. 

A single shepherd's hut contained all the inhabitants of the 
estate. The manor house was in ruins. The church was used as 
a hay-barn and a pig- sty. Here mother and son met after a long 

separation. The young man invited his aged parent 
takepo^es- to take the rest which she needed in the house, 
ruined as it was. She refused to follow him. First, 
she said, she must give thanks in the house of God for his pre- 
servation from the plague during his stay in London. The 
church was full of hay. She pushed her way in as far as she 
could, knelt down and prayed with many tears. She would take 
no rest till all the available labourers had been summoned to 
clear the building. 

As soon as the church was cleared, the old lady invited all 
her children and grandchildren 1 to share her home. Nicholas 

was ordained deacon by Laud. Preferment in the 
Gid e ding e Church was at once placed at his disposal ; but h<. 


Gidding. Nothing would induce him even to take priest's 
orders. All he wanted was to be the chaplain to the com- 
munity some forty persons in all who had devoted themselves 


to a special life in the service of God. There were prayers in 
the church twice a day, and four times in the house. Two of 
the inhabitants watched all night, to read the Psalms through 
from beginning to end. Ferrar drew up a harmony of the Scrip- 
tures, and this, together with narratives of history and adventure, 
more especially his old favourite, Foxe's Book of Martyrs, 
was read from time to time. Besides those who lived in the 
house, he had his Psalm-children, as he called them, who came 
in from the neighbouring parishes to receive, in addition to a 
breakfast, a penny for every Psalm that they could repeat by 
heart. He had schoolmasters for his nephews and nieces, and 
the children who lived near were welcomed to share in the in- 
struction given. Everyone there was obliged to learn some 
useful work, and the art of bookbinding was carried to great 
perfection. Once a month, on Communion Sunday, the ser- 
"vants of the establishment sat down at table with the other 
members of the community. Two of Ferrar's nieces devoted 
themselves to perpetual virginity, and all were obliged to remain 
celibate as long as they continued at Little Gidding. But 
there was no compulsory injunction on the subject, and not a 
few who passed many years with the Ferrars, left them without 
reproach to enter into marriage. 

Such an institution naturally gave rise to strange reports. 
Ferrar, it was said, was a Roman Catholic in disguise. He 
Reports repelled the charge with energy. One day he was 
establish* asked what he would do if mass were to be celebrated 
ment. j n hj s house. " I would build down the room, and 

build it up again," was his reply. To another who told him 
that his proceedings ' might savour of superstition and popery,' 
he answered quietly, " I as verily believe the Pope to be Anti- 
christ as any article of my faith." 

Visitors brought nothing but good reports away. Williams, 
visit of * n whose diocese Little Gidding was, expressed his 
Williams. w arm approbation, more especially perhaps as the 
communion-table was placed east and west, and not along 
the wall. 

In Ferrar the devotional spirit of the age reached the ex- 
treme limits possible within the bounds of Protestantism. Life 


at Little Gidding was preserved from all moral question- 
Character of m g s by submission to external rule and order, 
chtse^by Those who were always praying or working had not 
Ferrar. much time left for thought. Each day passed away 
as like the last as possible. Ferrar sought but a harbour from 
the changes of life. There was no striving after an ideal per- 
fection, no fierce asceticism or self-torture in him. His life 
was the application to himself of that dislike of mental and 
moral unrest which was at the bottom of Laud's disciplinarian 
efforts. That which existed acquired a sacredness in his eyes 
merely because it existed. He was once asked why he did 
not place a crucifix in his church. " If there had been any 
when we came," he answered, " I would not have pulled it 
down except authority had commanded ; so neither will I 
set up anything without command of authority." He at least 
would be free as long as possible from the responsibility of 
decision. 1 

It was not by such negative virtues that the old monasticism 
had gained a hold on the mediaeval world. Men came to 
look at Ferrar's community, wondered, admired, and turned 
George away to their own activities. George Herbert had 
Herbert. much in common with Ferrar ; but he never could 
have arrived at this perfect quiescence of spirit. A younger 
brother of that Edward Herbert who had been created by 
Charles Lord Herbert of Cherbury, he was fired, at 

l6 9 ' an early age, with an ambition to rise in the service 
of the State. At Westminster and Cambridge he was noted 
George for industry and intelligence, wrote lines, like so 
Cambridge, many others, to the memory of Prince Henry, and 

l6iz - flashed before the University as the author of a series 
of Latin poems in defence of the ceremonies of the Church 
against Andrew Melville. If the reader misses in these sar- 
castic poems any manifestation of high spiritual devotion, they 
need not, on that account, be set down as a mere offering upon 
the altar of courtiership. Herbert was a ceremonialist by nature. 
The outward sign was to him more than to most men the ex- 
pression of the inward fact. His religion fed itself upon that 
1 Two Lizes of Nicholas Ferrar. Edited by J. E. B. Mayor. 


which he could handle and see, and that quaintness which 
strict criticism reprehends in his poetry, was the effect of his 
irresistible tendency to detect a hidden meaning in the most 
unexpected objects of sense. 

In these Cambridge days Herbert's mind was distracted 
between two different aims, which yet appeared to him to be 
but one. Marked out by his character for a peaceful devotional 
life, and absolutely unfitted for the turmoil of political contro- 
versy, his youthful spirits were too buoyant to allow him to 
acknowledge at once his inability to play a stirring part in the 
world. One day he was writing religious poetry. Another 
day he was canvassing for preferment, and he contrived to 
persuade himself that preferment would enable him to help 

1619. on the cause of religion better than writing poetry. 
Pubiic sen * n I ^ r 9 ^ e succe ded Nethersole as Public Orator 
Orator. o f the University. The position delighted him as 
giving him precedence next to the doctors, 'and such like 
gaynesses, which will please a young man well.' On the other 
hand, he reminded himself that progress in the study of 
divinity was still to be his main object. " This dignity," he 
wrote, " hath no such earthiness in it but it may very well be 
joined with heaven ; or if it had to others, yet to me it should 
not, for aught I yet know." 

Herbert's efforts after worldly distinction ended in failure. 
He had good friends at Court. Hamilton, Lennox, and James 
himself loved him well ; but he was too honest to sink to the 
lower arts of a courtier's life, and he had not the practical 

abilities of a statesman. The oration with which 

His oration he welcomed Charles on his return from Spain was 
an evidence of the sincerity with which he could not 
help accompanying flatteries neither more nor less absurd than 
those which flowed unmitigated from the pens of so many of 
his contemporaries. It was no secret that the Prince had come 
back bent upon war. Herbert' disliked war, and he could not 
refrain from the maladroit compliment of commending Charles 
for going to Madrid in search of peace. All that he could 
bring himself to say was that, as war was sometimes necessary, 
he would be content to believe any war to be necessary to 


which James should give his consent. If Herbert bowed down 
it was not to the Prince whom it was his interest to captivate, 
but to the peaceful King who had maintained the ceremonies 
of the Church against their assailants. 

A change came over Herbert's life. His three patrons 
Hamilton, Lennox, and James died. From Charles, rushing 

1625. headlong into war, the lover of peace had no favour 
" e take' ves to ex P ect - His health, always feeble, broke down, 
orders. j n this time of depression he formed a resolution to 
take orders, to become, as he said, one of ' the domestic ser- 
vants of the King of heaven.' The clerical office was not in 
those days held in very high esteem. A friend dissuaded him 
from entering upon ' too mean an employment, and too much 
below his birth and the excellent abilities and endowments 
of his mind.' " Though the iniquity of the late times," he 
answered, "have made clergymen meanly valued, and the 
sacred name of priest contemptible, yet I will labour to make it 
honourable, by consecrating all my learning and all my poor 
abilities to advance the glory of that God that gave them, and 
I will labour to be like my Saviour by making humility lovely 
in the eyes of all men, and by following the merciful and meek 
example of my dear Jesus." 

Nevertheless, Herbert hesitated long. He was still a lay- 
man when Williams presented him to the prebend of Leighton 

Ecclesia in the diocese of Lincoln. The church 

Leighton was in ruins, and Herbert signalised his connection 
Ecclesia. ^\\\^ jt by collecting money from his wealthy friends 
for its repair. As in Cosin's church at Brancepeth and Ferrar's 
at Little Gidding, the reading-desk and the pulpit were placed 
side by side, and both were made of the same height, in order 
that it might appear that ' they should neither have a precedency 
or priority of the other ; but that prayer and preaching, being 
equally useful, might agree like brethren and have an equal 
honour and estimation.' 

Four years after his acceptance of preferment in 
Herbert at the Church, Herbert was still a layman. In 1630, 
Bemerton. ^ ^ re q uest o f fa e nea( j o f hj s family, the new Earl 

of Pembroke, he was presented by the King to the Rectory 


of Fugglestone and Bemerton, two hamlets lying between 
Salisbury and Wilton. Stories were afterwards told of his re- 
luctance to undertake a duty which he held to be too high for 
his powers, and it is said that he only gave an unwilling con- 
sent on Laud's representation ' that the refusal of it was a sin.' 
It was doubtless at this time that he received ordination, either 
from Laud, or from Davenant his diocesan. 1 

The charm of Herbert's life at Bemerton lies in the harmony 
which had arisen between the discordant elements of his Cam- 
His life and bridge life. The love of action, which was wanting 
poefy- in Ferrar, is still there. " A pastor," he declares, " is 
the deputy of Christ for reducing of man to the obedience of 
God." But it has blended with a quiet meditative devotion, 
and out of this soil spring the tenderest blossoms of poetic 
feeling. His own life was a daily sacrifice, but it was a sacri- 
fice, made not by the avoidance, but by the pursuance of work. 
For him the sacraments and observances of the Church had a 
fellowship with the myriad-sided sacrament of nature. As the 
bee hummed and the tree sent forth its branches, they conveyed 
to his pure and observant mind the inward and spiritual grace 
which was to him a comfort and a strength. The things of 
nature formed a standing protest against idleness. " Every 
gift of ability," he said, " is a talent to be accounted for." 
There was to be no mere crucifying of the flesh for its own 
sake, no turning of the back upon the world as evil. His 
sermons were filled with homely illustrations, and he took good 
care to explain to his parishioners the meaning of the prayers 
which they used. His own life was the best sermon. His 
predecessor had lived sixteen or twenty miles off, and had left 
the church in need of repair, whilst the parsonage-house was 
in ruins. The congregation was that of an ordinary country 
parish, long untaught and untended, and accustomed to regard 

1 Walton's well-known story that the Court was at Wilton, and that 
the tailor was sent for from Salisbury to provide a clerical dress, is certainly 
untrue. The Court was at Whitehall, and the presentation, printed from 
the Patent Rolls in Rymer (xix. 258), is dated from Westminster. It also 
describes Herbert simply as a master of arts. The omission of the usual 
Glericus shows that he was still a layman at this time. 


their rector as a mere grasper of tithe corn. The change 
produced by Herbert's presence was magical. Wherever he 
turned he gathered love and reverence round him, and when 
his bell tolled for prayers the hardworked labourer, weary with 
the toils of the day, would let his plough rest for a moment, 
and breathe a prayer to heaven before resuming his labour. 

The dominant note of Herbert's poetry is the eagerness for 
action, mingled with a sense of its insufficiency. The disease 
Pathos of his which wasted his body filled him with the conscious- 
P 0611 ^- ness of weakness, and he welcomed death as the 
awakening to a higher life. Sometimes the sadness overpowers 
the joy, as in those pathetic lines : 

" Life is a business, not good cheer, 

Ever in wars, 
The sun still shineth there or here ; 

Whereas the stars 
Watch an advantage to appear. 

' ' Oh that I were an orange tree, 

That busy plant ! 
Then should I ever laden be, 

And never want 
Some fruit for him that dressed me. 

" But we are still too young or old ; 

The man is gone 
Before we do our wares unfold ; 

So we freeze on, 
Until the grave increase our cold." 

To Herbert the life of the orange tree was the best ; the 
life of strenuous restfulness which brings forth fruit without 

effort. He lived less than three years at Bemerton. 


Herbert's When he died he left behind him a name which will 

never perish in England. 

Herbert and Ferrar were instinct with the feminine ten- 
dencies of spiritual thought. The masculine energy of life is 
Tendencies to be sought elsewhere. The self-reliant strength is 
of thought. w j t h t h e Puritan. The voices of Sibbes and Gouge 
are raised in great cities. Wherever men are thickest their 
prevailing eloquence is heard. Herbert and Ferrar allow the 


waves of change to pass over them, glad if they can find a refuge 
at last where they may, if but for a little time, be hidden from 
the storm. From them comes no note of the abounding joy- 
fulness, the calm assurance of success, which breathes alike in 
the sermons of the Puritan divine, and in the firm conviction 
of the dying Eliot. 

Even where there was much similarity in thought and ex- 
pression, the two influences which were passing over England 
are immutably distinguished by the passive or active 

Herbert and . ' , . & ,. . , . . , 

Milton on part assigned to the individual human soul. Herbert 
dearly loved music. Twice a week he would shake 
off his daily cares by a walk along the banks of the river to 
Salisbury, to drink in delight by listening to the cathedral choir. 
It was for him a medicine against the monotony of life and the 
pains of irresistible disease, healing by the charm of self-forget- 

" Sweetest of sweets, I thank you ; when displeasure 

Did through my body wound my mind, 
You took me thence, and in your house of pleasure 
A dainty lodging me assigned." 

From this height of rapt abstraction, those upon whom the 
burden of the world rested were but objects of distant pity. 

" Now I in you without a body move, 
Rising and falling with your wings, 
We both together sweetly live and love, 
Yet say sometimes, ' God help poor kings ! ' " 

Another singer, quickening in the first flush of youth to the 
consciousness of poetic power, loved music as dearly as Her- 
bert John Milton, the son of the London scrivener, had the 
open ear for 

"That undisturbed song of pure concent 
Ay sung before the sapphire-coloured throne." 

The earthly music lifted Herbert to heaven ; the heavenly 
music sent Milton forth to perform his duties upon earth. The 
lesson of Puritanism stands as clearly written thus early in the 
lines At a Solemn Music, as on the last page of Paradise Re- 


"That we on earth with undiscording voice 
May rightly answer that melodious noise ; 
As once we did till disproportioned sin 
Jarred against Nature's chime, and with harsh din 
Broke the fair music that all creatures made 
To their great Lord, whose love their motion swayed 
In perfect diapason, whilst they stood 
In first obedience, and their state of good. 
O may we soon again renew that song, 
And keep in time with Heaven, till God ere long 
To his celestial comfort us unite, 
To live with Him and sing in endless morn of light." 

To Milton God was ever ' the great Taskmaster ' who had 
set him to cultivate the field of his own mind that he might 
Milton's afterwards hold out help to others. Early in life he 
neL s Jf wJrk nad perceived that ' he who would not be frustrate 
to be done. o f hj s hope to write well hereafter in laudable things 
ought himself to be a true poem that is, a composition and 
pattern of the best and honourablest things; not presuming to 
sing high praises of heroic men or famous cities, unless he have 
in himself the experience and practice of all that which is 
praiseworthy.' Thus he grew up in his father's house in Bread 
Street, and amongst the thoughtless, scoffing academic youth of 
Cambridge, breathing the highest life of Puritanism, its serious 
thoughtfulness, its love of all things good and honourable, its 
pure morality and aversion to low and degrading vice, yet with 
nothing exclusive or narrow-minded in him. If he drank deeply 
of the Bible, he drank deeply of the writers of Greece and 
Rome as well, and the influence of the philosophers and poets 
of Greece and Rome was as marked upon his style as that of 
the prophets and psalmists of Jerusalem. Even in the great 
religious controversy of the day, the voice of the future assailant 
of Episcopacy and the ceremonies gives as yet no certain 
sound. The tone is Puritan, but there is nothing there of the 
Milton not fierce dogmatism of Prynne. At the age of seven- 
the orderVf teen ^ e not on ty j ome( i m tne praises of Andrewes, 
the church. th e prelate whom Laud most reverenced, but de- 
scribed him as entering heaven dressed in the vestments of the 


Church. 1 A few years later, in // Penseroso, he showed a power 
of entering into the thoughts of men with whom he was soon 
to come into deadly conflict, in the well-remembered lines : 

" But let my due feet never fail 
To walk the studious cloisters pale. 
And love the high embowed roof 
With antic pillars massy proof, 
And storied windows richly dight, 
Casting a dim religious light. 
There let the pealing organ blow 
To the full-voiced choir below 
In service high, and anthems clear, 
As may with sweetness through mine ear 
Dissolve me into ecstasies 
And bring all heaven before mine eyes. " 

To the historian these early poems of Milton have the 
deepest interest. They tell of a time when the great intellectual 
Theintei- disruption of the age was still capable of being 
ISnoTyet averted. Between Herbert and Milton there is a 
complete. difference in the point of view which may lead to 
absolute opposition, but which has not led to it yet. It is the 
same with men as unlike as Ferrar and Gouge. When Ferrar 
was asked whether ' he thought the chapel more holy than his 
house,' he replied ' that God was more immediately present 
when we were worshipping Him in the temple.' 2 "Though 
the Lord," wrote Gouge, " in His infinite essence be every- 
where present, yet the special presence of His grace and 
favour abideth in those places where He is truly and duly 
worshipped." 3 The one lays stress upon the place where the 
worshippers meet, the other upon the temper of those who 
meet in it ; but there is no breach of continuity, no violent 
opposition making a conflict necessary. 

Never, in spite of all that had occurred, had civil war ap- 
peared farther off than in the spring of 1633. Never did there 

1 " Vestis ad auratos defluxit Candida talos, 

Infula divinum cinxerat alba caput." 

2 Mayor's Two Lives of Ferrar, xxxiv. 

Gouge, The Sainfs Sacrifice (1632), 259. 


seem to be a fairer prospect of overcoming the irritation that 
,6 33 . had prevailed four years before. If only the rulers of 
apparently England could comprehend the virtue of moderation, 
far off. an( j could learn the strength which is to be gained 
by conciliation, all might yet be 'well. Unhappily, Charles was 
still at the helm, and Charles had promised the Archbishopric 
of Canterbury to the most conscientious, the most energetic, 
and the most indiscreet man in his dominions. Abbot's death 
would be the signal for violent changes, followed by a still more 
violent reaction. Abbot had yet a few months of life before 
him. During those months Charles, with Laud in his com- 
pany, paid a visit to his northern kingdom. 




IN Scotland, the years which had passed since the acceptance 
of the Articles of Perth had not been marked by any distinct 
prognostications of future trouble. Yet there were not wanting 
signs that the position of the bishops had been weakened. In 
the spring of 1620 their activity called out the first symptoms of 
resistance in a quarter from which the ministers had hitherto not 
j62o had much to hope. An order from James to the Privy 
April. Council directed that body to banish four citizens 
of Dunferm- from Edinburgh. The Earl of Dunfermline, the 
Chancellor of Scotland, with a lawyer's jealousy of 
the domination of bishops and presbyters alike, objected that 
October, it was illegal to punish without form of trial. A few 
months later the Council was directed to send for one of the in 
criminated ministers. " It is not our part," said the Chancellor, 
" to judge in kirk matters. The bishops have a High Commission 
of their own to try these things." " Will ye reason with the 
King?" cried Binning, who had been raised to the earldom of 
Melrose for his services at Perth. " We may reason," replied 
Dunfermline, " whether we shall be the bishops' hangmen or 
not." The old lawyer carried the council with him, and the 
case was referred to the High Commission. 1 

In the following year Parliament was summoned to give the 
force of law to the Articles. In a House of 120, a majority of 

1 CaLierwood, vii. 383. 

i62t 'BLACK SATURDAY: 275 

twenty-seven pronounced in their favour. The minority 

amongst the laity was far more imposing than it 

August, had bden at Perth. An analysis of the division 

confirmed by list sho\vs where the King's strength lay. After the 

Parliament. bi s h O p S and the Privy Councillors, his supporters 

were mainly taken from amongst the high nobility, that is to 

say, from the men who had the largest hold upon the Church 

lands. 1 

Long afterwards, zealous Presbyterians loved to tell how at 
the moment when the Bills of this session were being converted 
Thethunder- mto ^ aw by the touch of the sceptre, a blinding flash 
storm. of lightning burst forth from the lurid sky, giving the 

first warning of the terrific thunderstorm which followed. The 
air blackened as in the night, and the crashing hail was followed 
by torrents of rain. As the lords, instead of riding home in 
state, hurried away on foot or in their coaches, not a few of the 
citizens gazed upon the spectacle with ill-concealed satisfaction, 
and muttered that the storm was a visible sign of God's anger. 
" Nay rather," was the reply made by some one of the opposite 
party, " it is to be taken for an approbation of heaven, like that 
given at Sinai." 2 It was long before the memory of 'Black 
Saturday ' died out in Edinburgh. 

The true portents of coming evil were to be sought, not in 
the sky, but in the bitterness of indignation awakened by the 
The King's King's action. James, as soon as he heard the re- 
letter. su ij. o f j-hg Parliamentary campaign, hounded on the 
bishops to increased severity. " Hereafter," he wrote, " that re- 
bellious and disobedient crew must either obey, or resist both 
to God, their natural King, and the law of their country. . . . 
The sword is now put into your hands. Go on therefore to 
use it, and let it rest no longer till you have .perfected the 
service trusted unto you. For otherwise we must use it both 
against you and them." 

During the remainder of James's reign there was a perpetual 

1 Melrose to the King, Aug. 3. Ratification of the Articles, Aug. 4. 
Botfield's Original Letters, ii. 656, 658. Caldenvood, vii. 488-501. 
- Caldet~ii'ood, vii. 505. Sfottiswonde, iii. 262. 

T 2 


effort to enforce the articles. In 1623 Melrose reported that at 
Edinburgh ' the number of communicants was small,' 
Difficulty of anc * f those ' sundry of the base sort, and some 
Aide" sthe women not of the best, did sit.' l James was for ever 
exhorting and threatening in vain. Unruly ministers 
were imprisoned without effect. It is no wonder that when 
such resistance was offered to the Articles, James would hear 
nothing of giving his sanction to further innovations, and that 
he turned a deaf ear to Laud's 'ill-fangled platform to make 
that stubborn Kirk stoop more to the English pattern.' 2 

Charles's accession was the signal for the opening of that 
controversy with the nobility on which his father had not ven- 
,625. tured to enter. In securing a permanent income for 
propertyof 1 tne c ^ er gy> James had done nothing to obviate the 
the nobles, grave social and political evils attendant upon the 
vast absorption of Church revenues by the high nobility in the 
preceding and earlier generations. The -possession of a right 
to tithes, where the tithes were levied in kind, placed the owner 
of the soil at the mercy of the owner of the tithes, when, as was 
then the case in Scotland, the latter was not under the control 
of a strong central authority. The landowner might be com- 
pelled to keep his harvest ungarnered till it pleased the tithe- 
owner to take possession of his share. 3 Even if such extreme 
rights were seldom put in force, they created a feeling of de- 
pendence in those who were subjected to them, which must 

1 Melrose Papers, ii. 637. 

2 Mr. Sprott, in his Introduction to the Scottish Liturgies of the reign 
cf James VI. xxxvii, points out that the story of James's conversation with 
Williams about Laud cannot possibly have taken place at the date assigned 
to it by Hacket ; but it is probably true in the main. 

3 This is distinctly stated in Charles's Large Declaration issued in 1639, 
and may be taken as a true representation of the law of the case, even if 
the practice was more moderate. Compare, too, Lithgow's Scotland's 
Welcome. Poetical Remains, ed. Maidment, sig. C, 2 : 

" For Sir, take heed, what grief is this and cross ? 
To my poor Commons, and a yearly loss ; 
That when their corns are shorn, stouked, dead, and dry, 
They cannot get them teinded ; nay, and why ? 
Some grudge or malice moves despight to wound 
The hopeful harvest, and rot their corns on ground. 

1625 TITHES IN KIND. 277 

have gone far to strengthen the power of the nobles against the 
Government, and which would stand in the way of that distri- 
bution of equal justice which it was the business of the Kings 
Government to enforce. 

If, however, Charles was in the right in desiring to change 
an arrangement so fraught with mischief, his mode of inter- 

Oct. 12. ference was at once harsh and impolitic. Acting, 
of h Revoc^ Ct as ne usually did, on the supposition that his legal 
tioo. rights were identical with his moral rights, he issued 

an Act of Revocation by which the mass of Church property in 
the hands of laymen was re-annexed to the Crown, on the ground 
of technical flaws in the original concession. 1 Not only was 
the extreme form in which the Act was couched certain to raise 
up enemies of no despicable kind, but it sinned against the 
principle that long possession is entitled to consideration for 
the sake of persons totally innocent of the original wrong, whose 
interests have grown up around it. 

A proclamation issued to explain the King's intentions did 

nothing to remove this fundamental objection.' 2 The nobility, 

ig25 with the greater part of the Privy Council, were up 

Feb. 9. jn arms. The P>arl of Nithsdale, a Roman Catholic 
prociama' ^ peer, who had married one of Buckingham's many 
non. kinswomen, and was occasionally employed on delicate 

negotiations, had been sent to Scotland to carry the revocation 
into effect. He wars met by a storm of opposition. If later 
report spoke truly, the leading tithe-owners resolved, if nothing 
else would serve, to ' fall upon him and all his party in the old 

This is no rare thing on their stowks that's seen, 
Snow-covered tops, below their grass grown green." 

Scotland entreats Charles not to farm the tithes to the Lords : 

" Then let my tithes be brought to money rent, 
For thee, from landlord and the poor tenant ; 
So may they shear, and lead and stack their corn, 
At midnight, midday, afternoon or morn, 
Which shall be their advantage and my gain, 
When barns and yards are filled with timely grain." 

1 Acta Pad. Scot. v. 23. 

1 Proclamation, Feb. 9, 1626. Connell's Treatise on 7'ithes, iii. 58. 


Scottish fashion and knock him on the head.' l Another account 
charges the interested lords with exciting the people by spread- 
ing rumours that Nithsdale was coming to revoke, not the 
grants of tithes, but the laws establishing the Protestant re- 
ligion, whilst they frightened Nithsdale by informing him, 
before he had completed his journey, that the people of Edin- 
burgh had cut in pieces the coach which he had prepared for his 
entry into the city, had killed his horses, and were quite ready 
to do the same to himself. 2 

It was not often that worldly wisdom entered into the 

counsels of Charles ; but the decision which he now took upon 

July ii. hearing of the difficulties raised was admirably suited 

Charles to meet the danger. On the one hand, whilst laying 

offers com- ... 

pensation. stress on his intention to relieve the burdens of the 
land-owners, he offered such of the tithe-owners as would make 
voluntary submission a reasonable compensation for their loss. 
Tui 12 ^ n ^ e otner nan d, he suspended the operation of the 
The Ankles Articles of Perth, so far as those ministers were con- 
tiaiiy r su s ? ar ~ cerned who had been ordained before the new rules 

had been admitted, on the understanding that they 
would refrain from arguing against the existing system. At the 
same time there was to be a general amnesty for the ministers 
who had been arrested and imprisoned. In this way, whilst the 
Au 2g attack upon the high nobility was softened, Charles 
Legal action might hope to rally round him the mass of the nation in 

support of a wise and justifiable policy. 3 On August 26 
the King's Advocate took the first steps to bring the legal 

1 Mr. Burton (Hist, of Scotland, vi. 358) expressed doubts, in which I 
fully share, of the ' savage story ' told by Burnet of the blind Lord Bel- 
haven intending to murder the Earl of Dumfries. It may be added that 
the date of the third year of the King, given by Burnet, becomes 1628 in 
Mr. Burton's history, which is too late, and that the names Belhaven and 
Dumfries point to the late origin of the story. There were no such titles 
till 1633. Burnet's statement that the King purchased lands for the arch- 
bishoprics from Hamilton and Lennox ought to have been referred to a 
later date, as is shown by the English Exchequer Books, though there is a 
Privy Seal for 2,000!. for the purpose in 1625. 2 Heylyn, 237. 

3 The King to the Council, July n, Council, iii. 64. Balfour's Hist. 
Works, ii. 142. 


question to trial. 1 The blow was followed up by an order to Sir 

George Hay, who had succeeded Dunfermline as 

Chancellor a testy and stubborn old man, who had 

made himself the centre of resistance to come to London to 

justify his conduct. 2 

This decided step was at once successful. Envoys were 

l627- sent from Scotland to treat with the King, and, after 

Jan. 17. considerable discussion, commissioners were ap- 

Commission- . . 

ers to treat, pointed to examine the whole subject. 3 After a long 
1629. and minute investigation, a compromise was effected. 
Compromise The Church lands were to remain in the hands of 
tedl those who held them, upon payment of certain rents 
to the King. Tithes, on the other hand, were dealt with in 
a more complicated fashion. The landowner was to be at 
liberty to extinguish the right of levying tithes on his property 
by payment of a sum calculated at nine years' purchase. If he 
did not choose to exercise this option, the tithe in kind was 
to be commuted into a rentcharge, from which was to be de- 
ducted the stipend payable to the ministers, and an annuity 
reserved for the King. 4 Special regard was paid 
the com? to the circumstances of the minister, who in many 
use ' instances received an augmentation of his stipend. 
In its final shape the arrangement thus made is worthy of 
memory as the one successful action of Charles's reign. In 
money value it did not bring anything to the Scottish exchequer, 
as the King disposed of his annuity in perpetuity in pay- 
ment of a debt of io,ooo/. ; 5 but it weakened the power of 
the nobility, and strengthened the prerogative in the only 
way in which the prerogative deserved to be strengthened 
by the popularity it gained through carrying into effect a wise 
and beneficent reform. Every landowner who was freed from 
the perpetual annoyance of the tithe-gatherer, every minister 

1 Council, iii. 68. 

2 Contarini to the Doge, Oct. ^, Ven. Transcripts, R. 0. 
8 Commission, Jan. 7, 1627, Connell, iii. "]l. 

4 Connell, Book iii.-iv. Forbes, A Treatise on Church Lands and 
Tithes, 258. See also the observations of Mr. Burton (vi. 353-368). 
* forks, 264. 


whose income had been increased and rendered more certain 
than by James's arrangement, knew well to whom the change 
was owing. 

To object to the change thus effected because it favoured 
the growth of the prerogative is mere constitutional pedantry. 
The stage of civilisation at which Scotland had 
against the arrived was one in which it was still desirable that 
racy ' the prerogative should be extended. The nobility 
were still, with some brilliant exceptions, self-seeking and un- 
ruly, 1 and the time for the development of a full Parliamentary 
system only arrives when all members of a State are equally 
submissive to the laws of the State. 

In Scotland therefore Charles had but to persevere in the 
course upon which he had already entered. If he could satisfy 
the temporal requirements of the mass of the nation, and if he 
could avoid irritating their religiou^ sentiments or their re- 
ligious prejudices, he might still grasp firmly the nettle of aris- 
tocratic discontent. 

Aristocratic discontent there was sure to be. It is hard to 
say that the nobility had any real ground for dissatisfaction. 
They had exchanged an income irregularly gained, and obtained 
by oppressive means, for one which was indeed less in amount, 
but which was to be secured not only by an indefeasible title, 
but by the cessation of the irritation caused by their former pro- 
ceedings. Large bodies of men, however, are never very reason- 
able in their view of changes which cause them apparent damage, 
and the circumstances under which the original confiscatory Act 
of Revocation had been issued were such as to make them sus- 
picious of Charles's future action. The withdrawal of the means 
of indirectly influencing the conduct of the landowners, which 
was a pure gain to the community, naturally left the Scottish 
nobles sore, just as, in later times, English landowners were left 
sore by the destruction of the rotten boroughs. 

Nor were the nobles without apprehension that Charles 
would take a further step in the same direction. The question 

1 The beginning of Spalding's History of the Troubles, and the latter 
part of Mr. Burton's sixty-fourth chapter, headed ' Sufferings of the 
Bishops ' (vi. 246) should be studied by all who doubt this. 


of the heritable jurisdictions had been again mooted in the 

course of the controversy, and though the King had 

the'heriubie restricted himself to the expression of a wish to buy 

jurisdictions. them ^ wnenever h e was j-j^ enOUgh to do SO, 1 

it was always possible that a blow might be struck against them 
as sudden and unexpected as the Act of Revocation. 

It was therefore certain that for some time to come Charles 

would have to confront the tacit hostility of the Scottish nobility. 

For the present it was certain to be no more than a 

invited 5 to tacit hostility. Now that the legality of the Act of 

:otind. Revocation had been acknowledgsd, the nobles were 
anxious that the compromise to which they had consented 
should receive a Parliamentary sanction, which would save them 
from a more extreme danger in the future. Charles was there- 
fore entreated to visit Scotland to be crowned, and to hold a 
Parliament in which the sanction of law might be given to the 
late arrangements. 

June 18. Various circumstances delayed the Royal visit, 

The King's and it was not till 1633 that Charles crossed the 

coronation at 

Edinburgh, border. On June 15 he entered Edinburgh amidst a 
storm of loyal welcome. On the i8th he was crowned at Holy- 

As a political ceremony there can be little doubt that 
Charles's coronation was greeted with genuine enthusiasm. It 
was, however, a religious ceremony as well, and the form which 
it took would therefore go far to indicate whether Charles meant 
to make the ideas of his letter for the suspension of the Perth 
Articles the leading principle of his ecclesiastical policy, or 
whether that suspension was only extorted from him by the 
immediate necessities of the situation, to be revoked as soon 
as the danger appeared to be at an end. It was a momentous 
question for Charles, for the decision of it in the wrong way 
would throw the whole force of popular religious enthusiasm on 
the side of the nobles, if they should at any time find it advis- 
able to renew the struggle which they had for the moment re- 
nounced as hopeless. 

1 Contarini to the Doge, Jan. , 1627, Veil. Transcripts, K.O.; Heylyn, 


The Prayer-book, the preparation of which had been en- 
joined by the Assembly which had met at Aberdeen three years 
before, was completed early in 1619. Herat's version 
The Pra'yer- had been thrust aside, and another, of which the 

book of the i /- /- i , , , , 

Scottish chief part of the composition has been ascribed to 

Cowper, Bishop of Galloway, was revised by Spottis- 
woode and the Dean of Winchester, a Scotchman of the name 
of Young. But it was not brought into use. James was alarmed 
at the outburst of resistance to the Perth Articles, and in 1621 
he allowed his Commissioners to promise the Scottish Parlia- 
ment that if those Articles were confirmed there should be no 
further innovation in matters of religion. 

The question of a liturgy was allowed to sleep for eight 
years. In 1629 the proceedings of the English Parliament 

riveted the ascendency of Laud upon Charles's mind, 
September, and the success which he had obtained in the busi- 
revtve^the ness of tithes in Scotland may have induced him to 

think that he had no reason to keep terms with 
Puritanism in that kingdom. Whatever the motive may have 
been, he sent for the draft of the Prayer-book. It was brought 
to England by Dr. James Maxwell, one of the Edinburgh 
ministers, a man unlikely to give offence from any undue sym- 
pathy with Puritanism, and was by him submitted to Laud, 
in obedience to Charles's orders. 

Laud's judgment could hardly be doubtful. In itself uni- 
formity was delightful to him, as the prop and stay of spiritual 

unity, and the mere fact that the proposed draft for 
th^EngHsh Scotland differed from the existing English version 

would dispose him unfavourably towards it. In itself, 
too, the new Prayer-book must have seemed to him to differ 
for the worse from the forms to which he was accustomed. 
Though it followed to a great extent the Book of Common 
Prayer, it had large portions inserted from Knox's Book of 
Common Order, and was, on the whole, such a recension of the 
Prayer-book as would commend itself to the feelings of an 
English low churchman of the present time. 1 Laud therefore 

1 Thus, in the Baptismal Service, the use of the sign of the cross and 
the declaration after baptism 'that this child is regenerate,' were omitted, 


declined to give his approbation to the liturgy which was 
stamped with the recommendation of the Scottish bishops. 
" I told him," he said long afterwards, in giving an account of 
his conversation with Maxwell, " I was clear of opinion that if 
his Majesty would have a liturgy settled there, it were best to 
take the English liturgy without any variation, that so the same 
Service Book might be established in all his Majesty's do- 
minions." Maxwell's reply was a warning of coming evil. That 
the Scotch were Puritans was only one side of the danger. 
They were also Scotchmen proud of their ancient nationality, 
and jealous, as only small communities are jealous, of any in- 
vasion of their special modes of action at the dictation of 
foreigners. "To this,'' says Laud, " he replied that he was of 
a contrary opinion, and that not only he, but the bishops of 
that kingdom thought their countrymen would be much better 
satisfied if a liturgy were formed by their own clergy, than to 
have the English liturgy put upon them ; yet, he added, that it 
might be according to the form of our English Service Book." 
Even the hope held out of large modifications did not satisfy 
Laud. He reported the conversation to Charles, and Charles, 
as blind as Laud to the dangers in his path, approved Laud's 
proposal for the introduction of the English Prayer-book, 

The Scottish bishops were reaping, in their humiliation, the 

and it was ordered that, at the Communion Service, the table was to stand 
'in that part of the church which the minister findeth most convenient.' The 
double form derived from the two Prayer-books of Edward VI. was pre- 
served in the administration of the Communion to the people on their knees ' 
but it was prefaced by a short address adopted from Knox : "Let us lift 
up our hearts unto the Lord, and by faith lay hold upon Jesus, whom 
God the Father, by his Spirit, offereth to us in this holy sacrament, that 
we may draw virtue from the Lord to quicken and conceive our souls and 
bodies unto eternal life." The whole subject is treated of at length in 
Mr. Sprott's Appendix to the Scottish Liturgies of the reign of James VI. 
One point which confirms his argument that the Prayer for the Queen was 
introduced in the autumn of 1629 has escaped his notice. The petition to 
' make her a happy mother of successful children ' must, almost certainly, 
have been written, not only before the birth of Prince Charles, but after 
the Queen ; s miscarriage of her first child. 1 have not quoted the original 
authorities for this part of my narrative, as the reader will find them all 
referred to in Mr. Sprott's excellent Introduction. 


harvest of the seed which they had sown in their apparent triumph 
at Perth. They had preached the acceptance of an 

Position of , /- i i i "i i i 111 i 

the Scottish order of things which they themselves held to be un- 
advisable, in order to please the King, and they now 
found that the King's successor cast aside their advice and 
their warnings as unworthy of a moment's notice. It is not 
required of those whose work it is to govern that they should 
be possessed of the highest spiritual insight, or that they should 
be constantly promulgating some new discovery in politics or 
theology ; but if they are to retain the respect of contemporaries 
or of posterity, it is absolutely necessary that they should place 
some reasonable limits upon the extent to which they allow 
their own judgments to be overruled by considerations of ex- 
pediency. It was not mere obsequiousness or ambition which 
had dictated the readiness of the bishops to accept, against their 
better judgment, the Articles of Perth. It was owing to the 
kingly authority that the Scottish clergy were able to carry out 
the work of their ministry in the face of the hungry and grasp- 
ing owners of the soil, and it may well have seemed to the 
bishops that to oppose the King, except upon some question 
on which their own conscience was at stake, would throw back 
the Church into the clutches of the nobility. Since the Articles 
of Perth had been put in practice, however, some experience 
had been gained. The risk of placing the King's rule in oppo- 
sition to the religious consciousness of the nation was becoming 
plain to all who had eyes to see. To withstand the King at 
Perth in 1618 would have been, if they had only known it, the 
best service that the bishops could have rendered to James. 
To withstand the King at Edinburgh in 1633 would be the 
best service that they could render to Charles. It was because 
the Scottish bishops had no word to speak in the great contest 
which was arising, because, being neither strong partisans nor 
wise mediators, they drifted helplessly like logs on the current of 
affairs, that their very name stank in the nostrils of the Scottish 
nation, and that they were credited with all the mischief which 
they had done nothing to remedy. The great Italian poet would 
have condemned them without appeal to an endless comrade- 
ship with those who were alike displeasing to God and to His 


enemies. The moral strength which is based on the convic- 
tion that a man ought to think and speak independently of the 
dictation of the King was passing over, if it had not already 
passed over, to their opponents. 

What the bishops did not say was said by William Struthers, 
one of the Edinburgh ministers, himself a conformist, though 
a most unwilling conformist, to the Articles of Perth. 
Struthers's " There is some surmises," he wrote in a letter in- 
tended for the King's eyes, " of further novation of 
organs, liturgies, and such like, which greatly augments the 
grief of the people." The Church, he said, lay groaning under 
two wounds, the erection of bishoprics and the order to kneel 
at the reception of the sacrament. If a third were added, 
and the congregations were ' forced to suffer novelties ' in ' the 
whole body of public worship,' nothing short of general confu- 
sion would be the result. 1 

Charles, when at last he visited Scotland, came with the 
resolution to override such remonstrances. By his side was 
l633 . Laud, prepared to renew at Edinburgh the recom- 
Laud iu mendations which he had given in London. 

Charles s 

company. On the day of the coronation the final decision 

had yet to be taken ; but the ceremonies observed in Holy- 

june 18. r c chapel were not such as gave hope that much 

Ceremonies regard would be paid to the feelings of Scotchmen. 

at the coro- 

nation. The Archbishop of St. Andrews and the other four 
bishops who took part in the service were attired in 'white 
rochets and white sleeves, and copes of gold having blue silk 
to their foot.' The Communion-table was prepared after a 
fashion which must have recalled to all educated Scotchmen 
the famous epigram of Andrew Melville. One who was by no 
means a stickler for extreme Puritanism remarked that a table 
was placed in the church ' after the manner of an altar, having 
thereupon two books, with two wax chandeliers, and two wax 
candles which were unlighted, and a basin wherein there was 
nothing.' At the back of this altar, " covered with tapestry,' 
he added, " there was a rich tapestry wherein the crucifix was 
1 Z>a!f0ur, ii. iSl. The Earl of Airth, to whom the letter is said to 
have been addressed, was known at that time as the Eatl of Menteith. 


curiously wrought ; and as these bishops who were in service 
passed by this crucifix they were seen to bow the knee and 
beck, which, with their habit, was noticed, and bred great fear 
of inbringing of Popery." l 

The work of exasperating the religious feelings of the greater 
part of those who had any religious feeling at all in Scotland 
was thus successfully begun. The pressure put upon congrega- 
tions to kneel at the Communion was only felt once or twice a 
year. The offence given by the white garment and the rever- 
ence paid in passing before the crucifix would be an offence of 
weekly, if not of daily repetition, in the eyes of men who were 
sensitive above all other Protestants to the danger of relapsing 
into a system which they counted irreligious and antichristian. 

That which had been done in the King's chapel was not 

without its effect upon Parliament. On June 20, that body 

met for despatch of business. Unlike the English 

June 20. * 

Meeting of Parliament, it was not divided into two Houses. 
Parliament. Q ut of l83 mem bers, the non-official lords present 
in person or by proxy could number only sixty-six votes, and 
resistance to the King was therefore too hopeless to be at- 
tempted on a question in which, as in that of the compromise 
on tithes, he would have at his disposal the ninety-six votes of 
the representatives of the boroughs and of the untitled gentry. 
The ecclesiastical Bills offered a better rallying-ground for 

1 Spalding, 5. 36. Mr. Grub, in his Ecclesiastical History of Scotland, 
ii. 345, throws doubt on the usually accepted story told by Rushvvorth, 
that the Archbishop of St. Andrews, being placed on the King's right hand, 
and the Archbishop of Glasgow on the le.ft, Laud ' took Glasgow and 
thrust him from the King in these words : " Are you a churchman, and 
wants the coat of your order."' He argues that 'in Sir J. Balfour's 
minute narrative of the coronation it does not appear that any special place 
was assigned to Archbishop Lindsay,' and that Spalding says that 'the 
Archbishop of Glasgow and the remanent of the Bishops there present, 
who were not in the service, changed not their habit, but wore their black 
gowns without rochets or white sleeves.' It may be added that the details 
of the ceremony must have been arranged beforehand, and if the Arch- 
bishop objected to appear in a cope, the question would not have been left 
to be settled in the church. It should be remembered that during this 
period Rushworth is no safe authority. 


opposition. It would be invidious to bring a charge of deliberate 
insincerity against those of the lords who perceived this. Some 
of them perhaps may have looked upon the opportunity offered 
them as merely an occasion for a clever piece of political tactics. 
Others were doubtless inspired with a conscientious dislike of 
the new ceremonies. But it is probable that there were many 
whose eyes were opened to the duty of opposing the ceremonies 
by the attack made on their own property and interests by the 
now withdrawn Act of Revocation. 

Opposition to the Crown, however, was never very easy 

in a Scottish Parliament, excepting when the whole of those 

present were substantially agreed. A committee 

Difficulties , - T , ,. . . , . , . .. 

ofanoppo- named the Lords of the Articles was possessed of 
the exclusive right of examining and amending Bills, 
the whole House being compelled to accept or reject in their 
entirety the Bills which came down to them from that com- 
mittee. By a series of changes, permitted or condoned by the 
Scottish Parliament, never so alive as the English Parliament 
The Lords of to tne va -l ue of forms, the Lords of the Articles were 
the Ankles. so constituted as to represent as far as possible the 
wishes of the King. The nobility had first of all to select eight 
of the twelve bishops, and it would have been hard to find a 
single bishop opposed to the Crown. The bishops had then to 
choose eight out of the sixty-six nobles, and it would have been 
strange if eight nobles could not be found to vote as the King 
wished. The bishops and nobles together then chose eight of 
the untitled gentry and eight of the commissioners for boroughs, 
and even if every one of these sixteen had joined in opposition, 
they would be helpless to turn the scale. For the King had 
the further right of adding eight officers of state to the com- 
mittee thus constituted, 1 and of appointing his chancellor as 
its president. As if this were not enough, he might himself be 
present at the deliberations of the body thus formed. 

When at last the Bills were laid before the whole House, 
there was found to be one which confirmed all Acts of the late 
reign relating to the Church, and another which mixed up 

1 Burton, vi. 369. Acts of Parl. of Scotland, v. 10. 


the confirmation of an Act made in 1606 in acknowledgment 

June 28. of the Royal prerogative with another Act giving 

1 ' he , sitti , n s power to the King to settle the apparel in which 

of the whole l 

House. judges, magistrates, and the clergy were to appear 
in public. It would thus be impossible for anyone to vote 
against the latter clause without declaring himself the opponent 
of the King's prerogative. l Nor was anyone left in doubt that 
the Bill, if carried, would be used by Charles in a way very 
different from that in which the former Act had been used by 
James. Hitherto the use of English forms had been confined 
to the Royal chapel at Holyrood. But on the Sunday before 
the day on which the vote was to be taken, Charles had attended 
St. Giles's, ' and after he was set down in his own place, the 
ordinary reader being reading the word and singing psalms, 
as the ordinary custom was then, before sermon, Mr. John 
Maxwell . . . came down from the king's loft, caused the 
reader remove from his place, set down there two English 
chaplains clad with surplices, and they with the help of other 
chaplains and bishops there present, acted their English service. 
That being ended, in came Mr. John Guthrie, Bishop of Moray, 
clad also with a surplice,' or rather a rochet, ' went up so to 
pulpit, and taught a sermon.' 2 Another authority bears witness 
to the results. " The people of Edinburgh, seeing the bishop 
preach in his rochet, which was never seen in Giles' kirk since 
the Reformation, and by him who was sometime one of their 
own town's Puritan ministers, they were grieved and grudged 
hereat, thinking the same smelt of Popery." 3 

The leaders of the opposition had already prepared a 
petition which showed that they knew how to meet the King 
The rejected w i tn his own tactics. In complaining of the Acts re- 
petition, lating to the Church they took care to complain also 
of a proposed new taxation which weighed upon all landowners 
in Scotland. 4 

1 The powers conferred on James had been to the effect that ' every 
preacher of God's word shall hereafter wear black grave and comely 
apparel,' and that as the King was 'godly, wise, and religious, hating all 
erroneous and vain superstition,' he might settle what the apparel of the 
clergy was to be. z Row, Hist, of the Kirk of Scotland, 363. 

* Spalding, i. 20. * Row, 364. 

1633 A DIVISION LIST. 289 

Charles refused to receive the petition. In all the opposi- 
tion which was surging up suddenly around him, he doubtless 
The Bills saw nothing else than a factious and unprincipled 
accepted. attempt to take vengeance upon him for the Act of 
Revocation. He threw himself into the struggle with all the 
heat of a party leader. When the Earl of Loudoun stood up to 
question the propriety of joining the confirmation of two Acts 
in one Bill, the King sharply told him that ' the orders of the 
house' were 'not to dispute there but to vote.' 1 The whole 
assembly felt the importance of the contest which the King 
had challenged. When the division was taken there was 
scarcely a man present who did not anxiously note down the 
votes as they were given. Charles was too much interested 
in the result to maintain a dignified bearing ; he too jotted 
down the names, not without expressions of dissatisfaction with 
those who voted in the negative. This time he was saved from 
defeat. A majority probably only a slight majority was on 
his side. 2 

The names of those who composed the minority are lost to 
us with scarcely an exception, and rumour has been so busy in 
Rothes and swelling the original grain of truth till it is no longer 
Loudoun. distinguishable from falsehood, that it is impossible to 
reproduce the scene with any distinctness. Yet it can hardly 
be doubted that the Earls of Rothes and Loudoun took a leading 
part in the opposition, and Rothes and Loudoun were two of 
three commissioners who had come to England in 1626 on 
behalf of the titheholding nobility. 

How was this opposition to be met by Charles? On 
June 30, Laud preached at Holyrood on the blessings of con- 
formity, and a meeting of bishops and other ministers was held 

1 Sanderson's History, 194. That discussion was stopped is stated in 
the Humble Supplication, for connection with which Balmerino was after- 
wards tried. 

2 Mr. Napier (Monlrose and the Covenanters, i. 521) seems to me to 
have completely disposed of the story that there was a real majority the 
other way, concealed by Charles. Yet, though its antecedent improbability 
is glaring, it was believed soon after the time. 



to discuss with him and the King the proposed introduction 

of the English Prayer-book. Some of those present, Lindsay, 

June 3 o. Bishop of Brechin, the historian and defender of the 

Theintro- Articles of Perth, Maxwell, who had just become 

duction of J 

the Prayer- Bishop of Ross, Sydserf an Edinburgh minister, 
poned. and Wedderburn, a Scotchman who had been a 
professor at St. Andrews, and was now a beneficed clergyman 
in the English Church, gave their voices in favour of Laud's 
unwise proposal. The mass of the bishops were still of the 
same mind as in 1629. Yet so far as our information goes, 
they did not speak out plainly. They did not say that they 
could not go one step farther than the liturgy which they 
had prepared. They talked of the objection which would be 
taken in Scotland to a liturgy precisely similar to that used 
south of the Tweed. They complained of a few unimportant 
errors, mistakes in the translation of the Psalms, and the like. 
Every Scotchman knew that the real objection did not lie here. 
Charles did not care to see it. He gave way so far as to agree 
that some of the Scotch bishops should set to work ' to draw 
up a liturgy as near that of England as might be.' 1 The Book 
of 1619 was tacitly allowed to drop out of sight. It had itself 
been more obnoxious than the book of 1617. Its successor 
might well be more obnoxious still. 

The next day Charles set out for a progress in the country, 

which he enjoyed extremely. In spite of all that had passed, 

July 18. h^ was received with every demonstration of affec- 

Charies t_i oll- i n the whole course of his wanderings he 

leaves Scot- .... , . 

land. met with only one mishap, being nearly drowned in 

crossing from Burntisland, on his way back to Edinburgh. 
On July 1 8 he left his northern capital on his journey home. 

Although the composition of a Prayer-book was for the 
present suspended, Charles had not been long in England before 
he discharged a Parthian shot at Scotland. In virtue of the 

1 Laud's Works, iii. 278. Crawford, Lives of the Officers of the Crown, 
177. He founds his narrative on MSS. of Spottiswoode which have been 
lost, and upon Clarendon, who had doubtless a good opportunity of hear- 
ing what passed. Crawford anticipates by calling Sydserf and Wedder- 
burn bishops. 


powers conferred on him by the recent Act, he directed that 

at the time of service the clergy should appear in 
The surplice 'whites.' 1 Such an order could not be enforced ; but 

Charles had thrown up one more barrier between 
himself and the hearts of his loyal subjects in Scotland. 

Another step taken in the same direction showed whither 

Charles was tending. During his visit he arranged for the es- 

Sept. 29. tablishment of a new Bishopric of Edinburgh, the 

NewBishop- c jty an( j th e country around having up to that time 

Edinburgh, formed part of the diocese of St. Andrews. The first 

bishop appointed by Charles was William Forbes, a 
January, distant cousin of the Bishop of Aberdeen. A man 
thefirTt 565 more worthy of respect for wide theological learning, 
bishop. f or gentleness of spirit, and for earnestness and 
simplicity of life, it would have been difficult to find. Yet a 
more indiscreet selection could hardly have been made. In 
his dislike of contention and strife, Forbes was inclined to over- 
look the realities which divided the Church into parties, and 
his theology, derived from a study of the Fathers, led him to 
admit possibilities of reconciliation by which the most radical 
diversities of opinion were to be merged in the white light of 
undefined and impalpable truth. 

Least of all were the citizens of Edinburgh likely to give 
ear to a teacher who placed his ideal in a scheme of Christian 
thought which should enable the disciples of a Protestant 
Church to join hands with the disciples of the Pope. Even in 
Aberdeen, where a school adverse to the Puritan ideas of the 
South had arisen in the University, Forbes stood to a certain 
extent alone. In James's reign he had been settled as one 
of the Edinburgh ministers. Finding the place uncongenial, 
he had shrunk back to Aberdeen from the atmosphere of 
strife into which he had been plunged. If Forbes did not 
satisfy the Scotch, he satisfied Charles. In a sermon preached 

before the King he had taken for his text, " My 

l633 ' peace I leave with you." As disturbers of peace 

he arraigned before his pulpit on the one hand the Pope, 

as the claimant of infallibility and the promulgator of new 

1 Acts of Par 1. of Scotl. v. 21. 


doctrines, and on the other hand the Protestant theologians 
who contentiously proclaimed that which was not fundamental 
to be fundamental, and who took needless offence at ecclesias- 
tical rites which were anciently in use with the universal consent 
of the Christian Church. Three things, he said, were needed 
to restore order ; ' one liturgy, one catechism, one confession 
of faith.' The Church too needed external protection as well 
as inward unity. There were those who had stripped God of 
his portion, the Church of her patrimony, the pastors of their 
necessary food, the people of God of their spiritual bread, the 
poor of the maintenance of their bodies. When would the 
good Samaritan come to relieve the Scottish Church which had 
fallen among thieves ? ' 

Forbes, who had thus encouraged Charles to come forward 
as the good Samaritan, was not long to be exposed to the con- 
tentions of the world. After an episcopate of three 

April 12. 

Death of months he passed away, and gained that peace which 
was not to be found in the Scotland of his day. His 
successor was Lindsay of Brechin, who was in turn succeeded 
by Sydserf. Lindsay and Sydserf had been two of the four 
who had advised the introduction of the English liturgy. A 
third was already a bishop, and the fourth, Wedderburn, would 
not have long to wait. 

A new element was thus introduced into the Scottish epis- 
copate. The old bishops who had followed falteringly in 
James's steps would soon die out, and others whose thoughts 
answered to those of Laud would take their places. The life, 
the vigour of Puritanism was to be repressed, and a scholarlike 
uniformity was to smother all rude and violent clamour. Re- 
ligion and morality were expected to flourish when zeal, and the 
disorders which accompany zeal, had been put to silence. 

The course which Charles was taking was terribly dangerous, 

i6 The old bishops at least represented a movement in 

The old and the Scottish mind, a weariness of ecclesiastical jang- 

5 ops ' lings and of clerical domination. The new bishops 

represented Laud and Charles and England, or what seemed 

1 Sermon preached June 25, 1633, in Garden's Life of J. Forbes, 290, 
prefixed to J. Forbesii Opera. 


to be England to those who did not know where the heart of 
England was. Moral instincts which refused to be smothered 
by a catechism, a liturgy, and a confession prepared without 
reference to the beliefs of those for whom they were intended, 
would combine with the national indignation which was certain 
sooner or later to blaze up against the Scots who were ready 
to impose on their own country the bonds which were being 
forged in England. 

Till difficulties actually stared Charles in the face, he did 
not know that they existed. Still less did he perceive how 
much he was doing to increase them. He did not 
tjwfopposi- know that his Church policy was raising such men as 
"on Lords ' Loudoun and Rothes from insignificance. He fancied 
that to overwhelm those selfish and unprincipled adventurers, 
as he regarded them, he had but to testify his displeasure. 
Before his arrival in Scotland he had created some new peers, 
and had raised many barons to a higher rank. He now gave 
orders that the grants which had not been formally made out 
should be suspended in the cases of those who had joined in 
the opposition in Parliament. When he returned to England, 
he heard to his annoyance that untrue rumours were floating 
about, and that Scotchmen were whispering to one another that 
the majority for the Ecclesiastical Acts had been a fictitious 
one, and that he had himself interfered to conceal the fraud. 

Charles had thus gone back to England in no good temper 

with the Opposition. Treating it as altogether factious, he had 

refused, whilst yet in Scotland, to look at a paper 


The suppli- which had been drawn up by a certain William Haig, 
as embodying the sentiments of those who had voted 
against the Acts. This paper had been approved of by Lord 
Balmerino, the son of James's secretary, and had been passed 
on by him to Rothes to be shown to the King as a 'suppli- 
cation of a great number of the nobility and other commis- 
sioners in the late Parliament.' Rothes knew what the King's 
temper was, and began by sounding him before he ventured to 
deliver the paper. " My lord," was the reply, " ye know what 
is fit for you to represent, and I know what is fit to me to hear 
and consider ; and therefore do or do not upon your peril." 


After another attempt Rothes put the document in his pocket 
and made no further effort to obtain a hearing. 

Balmerino could not rest satisfied with this conclusion. 

He showed the paper in the strictest secrecy to his notary, 

and the notary took a copy which he showed, also 

August. . ' . 

The paper in the strictest secrecy, to a friend, who carried it 
King's l ie to Spottiswoode. Spottiswoode forwarded it to the 
hands - King. 

The supplication, humble enough in outward form, must 
have been most irritating to Charles. The sting of the paper is 
its charao to De fo un d rather in its general tone than in any 
ter - particular charge brought in it. On the one hand, it 

tacitly treated the whole existing Church system, and still more 
the changes which were known to be impending, as illegal. 
Nothing lawfully rejected at the Reformation could be reintro- 
duced without consent of the ' clergy lawfully assembled,' that 
is to say, in plain words, without the consent of a Presbyterian 
Assembly. The recent ecclesiastical legislation was rejected as 
'importing a servitude upon this Church unpractised before.' 

The framers of the supplication must have been aware that 
Charles might answer, as it had been again and again answered 
The King m England, that it was for the King and the nation 
Estates of expressing their will in an Act of Parliament to 
the Realm, impose their resolutions upon the clergy. They 
therefore proceeded to point out the obstacles which had been 
thrown in the way of that previous discussion without which 
Parliamentary proceedings are valueless. The Lords of the 
Articles had been chosen so as to make them merely the r ?pre- 
sentatives of a party. The dissentient nobles had been hindered 
from representing their views to them in conference, and when 
the final vote was taken the King had forbidden that anyone 
should state the reasons of the vote which he was about to give, 
and finally, by marking down the votes given, had shown that 
those who persisted in opposition were regarded by him as out 
of favour. 1 

The supplication, in short, discursively, and under forms of 

1 These ideas are expressed in different parts of the supplication, but 
they are all there. 


the highest respect, touched boldly on the sore point in Charles's 
government. His own will was predominant. The general 
opinion of the clergy had long been neglected. The general 
opinion of the laity had not yet completely turned against him; 
but it required tender handling, and it might at any day become 
adverse in the process. Those who pointed out this to Charles 
were doing him a real service. 

Charles did not perceive the service, but he did perceive 
that his whole system of government was threatened. Haig 

j 634 . having prudently escaped to Holland, Balmerino 
Proceedings was selected as the victim. By giving the paper to 

against . J e> f> f 

Balmerino. his notary he had published a seditious libel, and 
was liable to the penalty of death under the Scottish law of 
' leasing-making,' for stirring up enmity between the King and 
his subjects by false and malicious statements. It was not till 
ig March 1635 tnat tne trial actually came on. 1 The 

March 20. jury acquitted Balmerino of every charge brought 
HIS trial. against him but one. They found that he was not 
the author of the libel, and had not divulged or dispersed it ; 
but they also found, by a bare majority of eight to seven, that 
he was guilty of concealing his knowledge of its existence. 2 

Already, before the day of trial, a remonstrance had been 
addressed to the King by a man of whom Scotland was de- 
servedly proud. William Drummond of Hawthorn- 
March 2. J f 

Drummond's den did not rise above the second rank of literary 
greatness. But he was a man of varied culture, and 
his writings in poetry and prose were widely read. He was the 
foremost of that band of men which broke the tradition that 
Scottish literature ought to be written in the Scottish national 
tongue, and which strove to express their thoughts in the 
language which had served the purposes of Shakspeare and 
Jonson, and was one day to serve the purposes of Scott and 
Campbell. He was withal an upright and honest man, craving 
for philosophic and literary culture rather than for Calvinistic 

1 Mr. Burton, Hist, of Scot!, vi. 384, suggests that this delay was 
caused by the hesitation of those entrusted with the conduct of the pro- 

2 Slate Trials, iii. 591 ; Row, 386. 


orthodoxy, and fearing the inquisitive meddling of the Presby- 
terian clergy who would be sure to bear hard upon one of his 
tastes and opinions. He was one who, like Patrick Forbes, 
had formed part of that wave of liberal reaction, which, through 
the blunders of James and Charles, had already spent its force. 
As Forbes had warned James against his ecclesiastical mistakes, 
Drummond now warned Charles against his political mistakes. 
In a letter, evidently intended to be shown to the King, he 
pointed out that it was impossible to secure popularity by 
muzzling men's tongues and pens. In so doing the King was 
shutting his eyes to that which it most imported him to know. 
" Sometimes it is great wisdom in a prince not to reject and 
disdain those who freely tell him his duty, and open to him his 
misdemeanours to the commonwealth, and the surmises and 
umbrages of his pepple and council for the amending disorders 
and bettering the form of his government.' The best way to 
treat political libels was either to scorn them or to answer them. 
" Wise princes have never troubled themselves much about 
talkers ; weak spirits cannot suffer the liberty of judgments nor 
the indiscretion of tongues." l 

Drummond's letter was even a more impressive condemna- 
tion of Charles's system of government than the supplication 
had been. The tone is different, but the fault com- 


Baimerino plained of is the same. One man, however highly 
placed, cannot govern a nation from which he stands 
apart. It was because Charles could never learn this lesson 
that he fell at last. It was indeed morally impossible for him 
to send Balrnerino to the scaffold. Even Laud told him that 
a man must be pardoned who had been acquitted by seven 
jurymen out of fifteen. 2 The impression of the trial and the 
events which had preceded it could not be so easily wiped 
1 Drummond's Apologeiical Letter [to the -Earl of Ancram], Works, 
132. I need not refer the reader to Professor Masson's Drumtiwnd of 
Iiawthornden, which should be in everyone's hands who wishes to under- 
stand these times in Scotland. Unluckily he has passed over the affair of 
the tithes, without which no completely fair judgment can be formed. 
Mr. Napier, on the other hand, in his various works on the life of Mont- 
tose, was totally unable to see anything except the commutation of tithes 
and Presbyterian intolerance. 2 Raw, 389. 


away. Charles had gone far to b!ot out the memory of the 
services which he had rendered to Scotland in enforcing the 
commutation of tithes. 

When great national errors have been committed, smallei 
personal mistakes are certain to follow in their wake, and to 

i6 33 . obtain an importance which they would not other- 
fin'dinga f w * se nave nad> There can be no doubt that the 
Government, absence of the King was an enormous difficulty in 
the way of governing Scotland. Not only was the King himself 
liable to be filled with ideas which were not Scottish ideas, but 
the Privy Council which ruled in his name was sure to deterio- 
rate into the worst possible form of government. It was a 
committee in which there was no master mind. Personal 
objects swayed its members, and those men who should have 
stood as the leaders of the nation became known as men 
jostling against one another for power or pelf. One great blow 
had been wisely struck at their supremacy by Charles at the 
beginning of his reign. He had ordained that, with the excep- 
tion of the Chancellor, men who sat in the Privy Council as 
administrators of the Government, should not also sit in the 
Court of Session as judges. 1 From time to time he had done 
his best to moderate the quarrels of his representatives at Edin- 
burgh. But he had not sufficient knowledge of men to choose 
counsellors who were really worthy to govern, and his gradual 
alienation from the national feeling on the subject of religion 
made those who were really worthy shrink from his side. 

Gradually Charles saw fit to take for his counsellor in 
England the Marquis of Hamilton. He chose him as he had 
Hamilton in chosen Buckingham and Weston, and resolved to 
favour. support him against all complaints. It was not a 
wise choice. Hamilton was a weak and inefficient man, with, 
just enough remembrance of his relationship to the Royal 
dynasty to keep him perpetually on the watch for occasions 
which might increase his credit in Scotland, whilst his double- 
dealing, springing from an anxiety to stand well with every 
party, deprived him of all value as an adviser. 

Charles's choice of representatives at Edinburgh was even 
1 Balfour t ii. 129. 


worse than his choice of a confidant in England. When nobles 
were grasping and lawyers intriguing, there was one 

The bishops , , . 111 i i i i 

promoted in body of men who had never crossed his path, and 
who had given him every reason to assure himself of 
their devotion. If the bishops had given him full satisfaction 
when employed in Church affairs, why should they not give 
him full satisfaction when employed in political affairs ? Man 
for man, there was in all probability more chance that a bishop 
would be honest and self-denying than an earl or a baron would 
be. Charles at least thought so. Step by step he had pushed 
forward the bishops into temporal rank and office. At his 
coronation he had been vexed by the refusal of Lord Chancellor 
Hay, whom he had just created Earl of Kinnoul, to allow 
Spottiswoode to take precedence of him. Kinnoul declared 
his readiness to lay the Chancellorship at his Majesty's feet ; 
but whilst he kept it, 'never a priest in Scotland should set 
a foot before him, as long as his blood was hot.' l In December 
1635. 1 6$4 the 'ld cankered goutish man,' as Charles 
January, called him, died. In January 1635, tne Archbishop 
woode S Chan- ot St. Andrews was appointed Chancellor in his place, 
ceiior. Seven other bishops had been gradually admitted to 
the Privy Council 

The step which Charles had taken was a distinct challenge 
to all orders and classes of men. Those who were thus 
promoted were obnoxious to the Presbyterians because they 
were bishops, and to the mass of religious Scotchmen who 
were not distinctly Presbyterians, because they supported the 
ceremonies, and were incorrectly believed to have been the 
authors of all the innovations which had had their real origin 
in England. The nobles hated them as intruders upon the 
dignities which they claimed by birth. The lawyers were jealous 
of them as intruders upon the dignities which they claimed by 
virtue of professional knowledge. They stood alone in Scot- 
land as Charles stood almost alone in England. 
Dangers in ^ n tne summer of 1635 every element of a great 

the future conflagration was present in Scotland. Only the 
spark was wanting to set the country ablaze. 
1 Balfour> ii. 141. 




ON his return from Scotland, Charles had ridden hastily in 
advance of his retinue, anxious to rejoin the Queen at Green- 
wich before her approaching confinement. On October 14 she 
gave birth to a second son, baptized James by Laud, in memory 
of his grandfather. 

Laud was no longer Bishop of London. When he entered 

,633. the King's presence for the first time after he had 

August 6. j f t Scotland, he received an unexpected greeting. 

Laud named 

Archbishop. "My Lord's Grace of Canterbury," said Charles, 
" you are very welcome." The news of Abbot's death had just 
reached the Court. 1 

The change made by Laud's promotion may not seem to 
have been great. Before, as after, his accession to the arch- 
bishopric, he was possessed of Charles's fullest con- 
his S pro S mo- fidence, and he had not scrupled to interfere in the 
King's name in dioceses not his own. In reality 
the consequences of the change were enormous. Charles was 
indeed ready to make himself the centre of the ecclesiastical 
administration, and he had definite ideas on the direction in 
which he wished to go ; but he had not the force of character 
or the perception of the reality of things at a distance which 
marks out a great administrator, and, determined as he was to 
make his will felt, he rarely knew enough of what was going 
on to rouse himself to action. All that was wanting to Charles 

1 Heylyn, Cyfr. Angl. 250. 


was supplied by Laud. Every man who had a grievance 
against the Puritans, who could complain that Church property 
was embezzled or Church services irregularly performed, that this 
minister neglected to wear a surplice, and that the other minister 
omitted to repeat the Creed or the Lord's Prayer, appealed to 
Laud. As Bishop of London, Laud, if he pleased, could go 
to the King and procure his order that the complaint should be 
redressed; but he could hardly conceal from himself that the 
world looked upon his interference as impertinent. As arch- 
bishop he had his hand upon the spring by which, except in 
the remote and poor northern province, the whole ecclesiastical 
machinery was moved. His authority might be vague and 
undefined. There might be some doubt how far he was 
justified in interfering with the other bishops ; but there could 
be no doubt that the authority existed, and it was certain that 
in his hands its claims would be pushed to the utmost. It 
was nothing to him that the bishops would sink into mere 
agents of a central authority. The danger to society of taking 
away the habit of initiative from inferior officials was one which 
was not likely to alarm him. He cared merely that the right 
thing should be done, very little that men should put their 
hearts into their work at the risk of sometimes going a little 

No doubt Abbot had been negligent. To the inertness of 
character and age he united the inertness of a man who knew 
Abbot's last tnat ne was powerless to carry his ideas into practice, 
report. Eight months before his death he had sent in to the 
King a report of the state of his province. He did not care 
to know anything about it. The bishops, ' for aught it ap- 
peared,' had been keeping residence. For aught that he could 
learn, ordinations had been canonically kept. Here and there 
there had been something wrong, but it would be a comfort 
to his Majesty to hear that 'so little exorbitancy' could be 
found. 1 The reins were soon to be grasped by a tighter 

Abbot was scarcely dead when some one probably an 

1 Abbot's Report, Jan. 2, 1633, Laud's Works, v. 309. 


ecclesiastic attached to the household of the Queen offered 
Laud a Cardinal's hat if he would place himself at the dis- 
position of the Pope, and the offer was repeated a 

A Cardinal's *. . , , . . . 

hat offered fortnight later. "Something dwells within me, was 
the reply of the new Archbishop, "which will not 
suffer me to accept that till Rome be other than it is." 

Neither the emissaries of Rome nor the Puritans who 
charged Laud with entering into a secret understanding with 
Laud's Rome understood his character. Half the dogmatic 
principles, teaching of the Papal Church, half the dogmatic 
teaching of the Calvinistic Churches, was held by him to be 
but a phantom summoned up by the unauthorised prying of 
vain and inquisitive minds into mysteries beyond the grasp of 
the intellect of man, as unreal as were the Platonic ideas to 
the mind of Aristotle. The craving after certainty which sent 
the Calvinist to rest upon the logical formulas of his teacher, 
and which sent the Roman Catholic to rest on the expositions 
of an infallible Church, had no charms for him. Tt was suffi 
cient for him that he knew enough, or thought he knew enough, 
to guide his steps in the practical world around him. As he 
shunned the extremes of intellectual life, so too did he shun 
the extremes of emotional life. The fervour of asceticism, and 
the sharp internal struggles by which the Puritan forced his 
way to that serene conviction of Divine favour which he called 
conversion, were to Laud mere puerile trivialities which a sober 
and truthful man was bound to avoid. 

Soberness of judgment in matters of doctrine, combined 

with an undue reverence for external forms, an entire want 

of imaginative sympathy, and a quick and irritable 

Laud not r t 

suited to his temper, made Laud one of the worst rulers who 
could at this crisis have been imposed upon the 
English Church. For it was a time when, in the midst of 
diverging tendencies of thought, many things were certain to 
be said and done which would appear extravagant to his mind; 
and when the bond of unity which he sought to preserve was 
to be found rather in identity of moral aim than in exact con- 
formity with any special standard. The remedy for the diseases 
of the time, in short, was to be sought in liberty, and of the 


value of liberty Laud was as ignorant as the narrowest Puritan 
or the most bigoted Roman Catholic. 

Rumou-sof Those who are most prone to misunderstand 
Laud's lean- others are themselves most liable to be misunder- 

ings to 

Rome. stood. The foreign ecclesiastic, if such he was, who 
offered Laud a Cardinal's hat, did not stand alone in his inter- 
pretation of the tendencies of the new Archbishop, 
i.udowkk One Ludowick Bowyer, a young man of good family, 
owyer. w j-, o ma y h ave been mad, and was certainly a thief 
and a swindler, went about spreading rumours that Laud had 
been detected in raising a revenue for the Pope, and 
NOV. 3 o. had been gent to the Tower as a tra j ton The Star 

Chamber imprisoned him for life, fined him 3,ooo/., ordered 
him to be set three times in the pillory, to lose his ears, and 
to be branded on the forehead with the letters L and R, as a 
liar and a rogue. " His censure is upon record," wrote Laud 
coolly in his diary, " and God forgive him." l 

Whether Ludowick Bowyer was mad or not, there can be 
no doubt of the insanity of Lady Eleanor Davies, the widow 
of the poetic Irish Chief Justice, Sir John Davies. 
nteanor acy Two years before, her brother, the Earl of Castle- 
haven, had been executed for the commission of acts 
of wickedness so atrocious and disgusting as to be explicable 
only by confirmed aberration of mind. His sister's madness 
was fortunately only shown in words. She believed herself a 
divinely inspired interpreter of the prophecies of Daniel, and 
she published a book in which she recorded her ravings. 
She was brought before the High Commission. On 
ber ' the title-page was printed backwards her maiden 
name, Eleanor Audeley, followed by the anagram, Reveale 
O Daniel. Sir John Lambe pointed out that to make this 
correct, an ' I ' had to be substituted for the ' Y,' and suggested 
as a truer result from ' Dame Eleanor Davies,' ' Never so mad 

1 Kendrick to Windebank, Sept. 13. Same to Windebank, Sept. 26, 
Oct. 5. Windebank's Notes, Nov. 13, S. P. Dom. ccxlvi. 28, 82, ccxlvii. 
21, ccl. 59. Laud to Wentworth, Nov. 15, Str afford Letters, i, 155; 
sentence, Rush-worth, ii. App. 65. The fine appears never to have been 


a ladie.' } Loud laughter followed, but the poor woman was 
not allowed to benefit by the jest. She was imprisoned in the 
Gatehouse and fined 3,ooo/. She immediately discovered that 
Laud was the beast in the Revelation, and that he would die 
before the end of November. 2 Such a case was precisely one in 
which Laud, if he had had any magnanimity in him, would have 
used all his influence in favour of a relaxation of the punish- 
ment of a lady whose follies were their own penalty, and 
who, if she needed restraint, needed restraint of a tender and 
affectionate kind. The sentence was, however, carried out 
with extreme severity. Lady Eleanor's daughter petitioned in 
vain that her mother might be allowed to take the air, and that 
' for womanhood's sake ' she might have some one of her own 
sex to attend upon her, as well as some grave divines to comfort 
her in the troubles of her mind. 3 

The sharpness and irritability with which Laud was com- 
monly charged were not inconsistent with a readiness to use 
Laud's persuasion rather than force as long as mildness 
harshness, promised a more successful issue. When once he 
discovered that an opponent was not to be gained over, he lost 
all patience with him. He had no sense of humour to qualify 
the harshness of his judgment. Small offences assumed in his 
eyes the character of great crimes. If in the Star Chamber, any 
voice was raised for a penalty out of all proportion to the mag- 
nitude of the fault, that voice was sure to be the Archbishop's. 

Almost immediately after his promotion Laud received a 

letter from the King which was doubtless written at his own 

Sept. 19. instigation. In this letter he was directed to see that 

Restriction ^g bishops observed the canon which restricted their 

of ordma- x 

tion. ordinations to persons who, unless they held certain 

exceptional positions, were able to show that they were about 

1 As Heylyn tells the story, and as it has constantly been repeated, she 
tried to get the anagram out of Eleanor Davis. What I have given must 
be right, as it stands so on the title-page. Lambe's anagram is only right 
by spelling Davies. The book is in S. P. Dom. cclv. 21. 

2 Nicholas to Pennington, Oct. 28. Lines and petition, .S". P. Dam. 
ccxlvni. 65, 93, cclv. 20. 

* Petition of Lady Hastings, S. P. Dom. cclv. 21. 


to undertake the cure of souls. 1 In this way the door of the 
ministry would be barred against two classes of men which 
were regarded by the Archbishop with an evil eye, and at which 
he had already struck in the King's Instructions issued four 
years before. 2 No man would now be able to take orders with 
the intention of passing his life as a lecturer, in the 

Lecturers . .. 111 i IT- 

and chap- hope that he would thus escape the obligation of. 
using the whole of the services in the Prayer-book. 
Nor would any man be able to take orders with the hope of 
obtaining a chaplaincy in a private family where he would be 
bound to no restrictions except those which his patron was 
pleased to lay upon him. Only peers and other persons of high 
rank were now to be permitted to keep chaplains at all. 

Undoubtedly the system thus attacked was an evil system. 
The separation between the lecturer who preached and the 
Faults of the conforming minister who read the service was ad- 
system, mirably contrived to raise feelings of partisanship in 
a congregation and division amongst the clergy themselves. 
The lecturer who sat in the vestry till the prayers were over, 
and then mounted the pulpit as a being infinitely superior to 
the mere reader of prayers who had preceded him, was not 
very likely to promote the peace of the Church. The system 
of chaplaincies was fraught with evils of another kind. The 
chaplain of a wealthy patron might indeed be admitted as the 
honoured friend of the house, the counsellor in spiritual diffi- 
culties, the guide and companion of the younger members of 
the family; but in too many instances the clergyman who 
accepted such a position would sink into the dependent hanger- 
on of a rich master, expected to flatter his virtues and to be 
very lenient to his faults, to do his errands and to be the butt 
of his jests. Promoters of ecclesiastical discipline like Laud, 
and dramatic writers who cared nothing for ecclesiastical dis- 
cipline at all, were of one mind in condemning a system which 
brought the ministers of the gospel into a position in which they 
might easily be treated with less consideration than a groom. 3 

1 The King to Laud, Sept. 19, Heylyn, 240. * See page 131. 

8 Macaulay exaggerates when he says, ' nor would it be easy to find in 
the comedy of the seventeenth century a single instance of a clergyman 


Nevertheless that system had not been entirely mischievous. 

Hitherto the upper classes, by the appointment of chaplains, and 

the middle classes, by the appointment of lecturers, 

Its uses. -i j j i 

had preserved, in a very irregular manner, some se- 
curity that they should not be compelled to listen to religious 
instruction which they regarded as untrue. It was to be so 
no longer. Yet if the English people were not to be handed 
over to be moulded into the shape which suited any religious 
party which happened to gain for the moment the favour of 
the Crown, the right to select its own instructors must one 
day or another be restored to it. By restricting the right of 
teaching to those who had the sanction of the authorities, 
Laud was creating a necessity for that system of toleration 
which would give back, in a wider and more open manner, that 
which he had taken away. Though resistance to Laud was not 
easy, symptoms were not wanting that his persistent efforts to 
bring the clergy under control were being met by a growing 
Sept 2 distrust of the authorities of the Church. One Raine, 
Rames will. f or instance, a citizen of London, left a small sum 
in his will for the support of a lecturer. The lecturer was to 
be appointed by the Drapers' Company. He was to read the 
prayers of the Church of England. The testator was, however, 
not without disquieting fears for the future of the Church. He 
added that if there should be any alteration of religion, his 
bequest was to lapse to the Company. Against the mode in 
which Raine had directed the appointment of the lecturer to 
be made Laud determinately waged war. " My most humble 
suit to your Majesty," he wrote in his first report of the state 
of his diocese, " is that no layman whatsoever, and least of all 
companies and corporations, may, under any pretence of 
giving to the Church or otherwise, have power to put in or 
put out any lecturer or other minister." " Certainly," wrote 
Charles in the margin, with emphatic approbation, "I cannot 
hold fit that any lay person or corporation whatsoever should 

who wins a spouse above the rank of a cook.' In Fletcher's Scornful 
Lady, which he quotes. Roger marries 'a waiting gentlewoman,' i.e. a 
lady of equal birth with her mi tress, taking service, as Buckingham's 
mother did, on account of poverty. 



have the power these men would have to themselves. For I 
will have no priest have any necessity of a lay dependency. 
Wherefore I command you to show me the way to overthrow 
this, and to hinder the performance in time of all such inten- 

Laud's intense concentration upon the immediate present 
hindered him from perceiving the ultimate consequence of his 
acts. His strong confidence in the power of external 
of the Royal discipline to subdue the most reluctant minds en- 
couraged him to seize the happy moment when the 
King, and, as he firmly believed, the law, was on his side. 
Deeper questions about the suitability of that law to human 
nature in general or to English nature in particular he passed 
over as irrelevant. He did not look to the King to carry out 
some ideal which the law knew nothing of. He had ' ever 
been of opinion that the King and his people ' were ' so 
joined together in one civil and politic body, as that it ' was 
' not possible for any man to be true to the King that shall be 
found treacherous to the State established by law, and work 
to the subversion of the people.' 2 In his eyes, no doubt the 
King possessed legal powers which the medieval churchman 
would have regarded as a tyrannical usurpation. As the 
King administered justice by his judges, and announced his 
political resolutions by his Privy Council, so he exercised his 
ecclesiastical authority through his bishops or his Court of 
High Commission. 3 Though the bishops might give him advice 
which he would not find elsewhere, and though they might 
owe their power to act to a special Divine appointment, yet all 
their jurisdiction came from the Sovereign, as clearly as the 
jurisdiction of the King's Bench and the Exchequer came from 
him. 4 Hence Laud cared as little for the spiritual indepen- 
dence of bishops as he cared for the spiritual independence of 
congregations. His counterpart in our own times is to be 
found, not in the ecclesiastics who magnify the authority of 
the Church, but in the lawyers who, substituting the supremacy 

1 Laud's Report, Jan. 2, 1634, Works, v. 317. * Works, iii. 396. 
* Works, iv. 141. * Jbid. iii. 396. 

1633 PAUL'S WALK. 307 

of the House of Commons for the supremacy of the Crown, 
strive in vain to reply to all spiritual and moral questionings by 
the simple recommendation to obey the law. 

Laud understood far better how to deal with buildings than 
with men. The repairs at St. Paul's were being carried briskly 
Repairs at on un der the superintendence of Inigo Jones. Dur- 
St. Paul's. j n g t he remainder of Laud's time of power from 
9,ooo/. to i5,ooo/. a year were devoted to the work, arising 
partly from contributions more or less of a voluntary nature, 
partly from fines imposed by the High Commission which were 
set aside for the purpose. Much to the King's annoyance, 
rumours were spread that the greater part of this money was 
not applied to the building at all, 1 but went to swell the fail- 
ing revenues of the Crown. The restoration of the external 
fabric drew attention to an abuse of long standing. The nave 
State of the anc ^ aisles had, from times beyond the memory of 
interior. men ^ en living, been used as places of public resort. 
Porters carried their burdens across the church as in the open 
street. Paul's Walk, as the long central aisle was called, 
was the rendezvous of the men of business who had a bar- 
gain to drive, and of the loungers whose highest wish was to 
while away an idle hour in agreeable society. To the men of 
the reigns of James I. and Charles I. it was all that the coffee- 
houses became to the men of the reigns of Charles II. and 
James II., and all that the club-houses are to the men of the 
reign of Victoria. There were to be heard the latest rumours 
of the day. There men told how some fresh victory had been 
achieved by Gustavus, or whispered how Laud had sold himself 
to the Pope, and how Portland had sold himself to the King 
of Spain. There too was to be heard the latest scandal affect- 
ing the credit of some merchant of repute or the good name 
of some lady of title. When the gay world had moved away, 
children took the place of their elders, making the old arches 
ring with their merry laughter. The clergy within the choir 
complained that their voices were drowned by the uproar, and 

1 Montague to the clergy of his diocese, 1633 (?). Laud to the Lord 
Mayor, Jan. 22. The King to Laud, April 23, S. P. Dom. cclvii. 114, 
eclix. 22, cclxvi. 21. 

X 2 


that neither prayers nor sermon reached the ears of the con- 

With this misuse of the cathedral church of the capital, 

Charles, not a moment too soon, resolved to interfere. He 

issued orders that no one should walk in the nave in 


Charles time of service, that burdens should not be carried 
interferes. in the church at ^ and that the children must look 

elsewhere for a playground. In order to meet the wants of the 
loungers excluded from their accustomed resort, he devoted 
5oo/. a year to the building of a portico at the west end, for 
their use. The straight lines of the Grecian architecture of 
the portico contrasted strangely with the Gothic traceries above. 
If it reminds us as we see it in the old prints, of the deadness 
of feeling with which even a great artist, such as Inigo Jones, 
regarded the marvels of medieval architecture, it may also 
bring before us the memory of one instance in which Charles 
thought it necessary to conciliate opposition. 1 

In his care for St. Paul's, Laud was not likely to neglect 
his own chapel at Lambeth. Abbot had left it in much dis- 
The chapel order. Fragments of painted glass were mingled 
at Lambeth, confusedly with white spaces in the windows. The 
painted glass was now restored to the condition in which it had 
originally been when placed there by Archbishop Morton. It 
contained scenes from the Old and New Testament ; a repre- 
sentation of the Saviour hanging upon the Cross a crucifix as 
the Puritans termed it occupying the east end. When the 
windows were completed, the communion-table was moved to 
the eastern wall. Towards this the Archbishop and his chap- 
lains bowed whenever they entered. There does not seem to 
have been anything gorgeous or pompous in the ceremonial 
observed, which would have distinguished it from that which 
is to be seen in almost every parish church in England at the 
present day. 

The taste for church restoration was not confined to Laud. 

1 Council Register, Jan. 18, 1632. Report by Noy and Rives, March. 
Windebank to the King, Oct. 20. Articles by the King, 1632 (?) S. P. 
Dom. ccxiv. 94, ccxxiv. 20, ccxxix. 116. Compare Dugdale, Hist, of 
S 1 /. PaztPs, 145. 


Williams, opposed as he was to Laud's ecclesiastical system, 
June. sympathised with him in his love of church music 
munion^tabie an< ^ decoration. At Leicester the chancel of a parish 
at Leicester, church had been converted into a library. Williams 
persuaded the inhabitants to restore it to its original use, and 
to provide elsewhere a room for the books. He headed a 
subscription list for the increase of the library, and directed 
that the communion-table should be placed in the restored 
chancel, and should be moved down when needed for use, in 
accordance with the precedent which he had established at 

In a letter addressed to the Mayor of Leicester, Williams 
laid down the principles on which he acted. The table, he 
Se { ig said, was to stand on steps at the upper end, ' at such 
Letter of times as it shall not be used in the participation of 
the 'sacred mysteries.' "At that time," he added, 
" the law doth appoint it shall be set in the most convenient 
place either of the chancel or body of the church, whereunto 
the people may have best access, and where the minister that 
officiates may be most audibly heard, which, as I am informed, 
is the place where it stood before. Let it therefore at such 
times be placed there again, until by complaint of the minister 
or churchwardens of the inconvenience thereof, I shall give 
order to the contrary. Only both then and at other times my 
earnest suit unto you is that your table may be fairly covered 
and adorned wheresoever it stands, that whereas all men that 
are not extremely malicious, must needs commend your wise 
and discreet managing of the civil, idle people may have no 
occasion to tax your disposing of church affairs, and I assure 
you that a little charge in this kind would be well placed, being 
a thing acceptable to God, to the King, and to all good 
people." l 

It is hardly open to doubt that Williams's decision would 

1 Williams to Burdin, June 19. Williams to the Mayor of Leicester, 
Sept. 18, S. P. Dom. ccxli. 18, ccxlvi. 42. The date of this last letter con- 
troverts Heylyn's statement (Cypr. Angi. 269) that Williams's directions 
were intended as an answer to the King's decision in the case of St. 


have been accepted as satisfactory by the majority of religious 
The com- people in England. It would not, however, be ac- 
aTstGrt b ' e ceptable to the King and the Archhishop. Under 
gory's. their guidance another restoration had led to a very 
different result. For two years the little church of St. Gregory's 
which nestled under the lofty fabric of St. Paul's, as St. Mar- 
garet's stands to this day under Westminster Abbey, had been 
undergoing extensive repairs. 1 The cost, exceeding 2,ooo/., 
had been borne by the parishioners. The parish, which was 
exempt from the jurisdiction uf the Bishop of London, was 
under the care of the Dean and Chapter of St. Paul's, by whom 
authority was now given to place the communion-table altarwise 
at the east end, and to surround it there with railings, on the 
ground that it had been treated with irreverence whilst stand- 
ing in the nave, where some persons ' had not been ashamed 
to sit on it, others to write, others to transact there other and 
perhaps viler matters of business, distinguishing nothing or 
little between the Lord's table and a profane or convivial 

As soon as the change had been made, five of the 

parishioners complained to the Court of Arches. They alleged 

Oct. 18. that in parish churches the custom was that the table 

Complaint of should stand in the nave or chancel, not altarwise, 

the parish- 
ioners, but so that ' one end might be towards the west, m 

order that the minister might stand at the north side.' 2 

The King would not suffer the suit to be carried on. The 
Dean of Arches, Sir Henry Marten, was certain to decide in 
Nov 3- favour of the complainants. 3 The prerogative of 
Thequestion the Crown in ecclesiastical matters was even more 
Council. vaguely defined than in civil matters, and the King's 
right to interfere immediately was perhaps recognised by the 
Act of Supremacy. Charles therefore stopped the proceed- 

1 Stow's London, iii. 227. 

2 The original act was destroyed in the Fire of London, but a copy 
has been preserved, of which Mr. Napper kindly lent me a photograph. 
A translation was read by him before the Surrey Archaeological Society in 
1871, and was edited for their Transactions by Mr. J. G. Nichols. 

Articles. Oct. 18, S. P. Dom. ccxlviii. 18. 


ings, and summoned the parties, as well as the judge, before the 
Privy Council, there to discuss the matter in his own presence. 
Marten, as might be expected, was deeply annoyed, and he 
showed his vexation by his language. The communion-table 
in its new place, he said, would make a good Court cupboard. 
' Arundel and Portland argued that it was unfit that the table 
should stand one way in the mother church, and quite other- 
wise in the parochial annexed.' Laud spoke strongly in favour 
of the change. After the arguments on both sides were ex- 
hau sted, Charles gave his decision. 

" His Majesty . . . was pleased to declare his dislike of all 
innovations and receding from ancient constitutions grounded 
The King's u P n j ust " n< 3 warrantable reasons, especially in 
decision. matters concerning ecclesiastical order and govern- 
ment, knowing how easily men are drawn to affect novelties, 
and how soon weak judgments in such cases may be overtaken 
and abused. . . . He was also pleased to observe that if these 
few parishoners might have their wills, the difference thereby 
from the aforesaid cathedral mother church, by which all other 
churches depending thereon ought to be guided, would be the 
more notorious, and give more subject of discourse and disputes 
that might be spared, by reason of St. Gregory's standing close 
to the wall thereof." Then, after glancing at the plea of the 
parishioners, who had abandoned the firm ground of Williams's 
settlement, to argue ' that the book of Common Prayer and the 
eighty-second Canon do give permission to place the com- 
munion-table where it may stand with most fitness and con- 
veniency,' the King proceeded to lay down the law of the future. 
" For so much," he said, " as concerns the liberty given by the 
said Common Prayer-book or Canon, for placing the com- 
munion-table in any church or chapel with most conveniency ; 
that liberty is not so to be understood as if it were ever left to 
the discretion of the parish, much less to the particular fancy 
of any humorous person, but to the judgment of the ordinary, 
to whose place and function it doth properly belong to give 
direction in that point, both for the thing itself and for the time 
when and how long, as he may find cause." In this case the 
Dean and Chapter of St. Paul's were the ordinaries, and Marten 


was therefore directed to give judgment against the complain- 
ants, if they persisted in their suit. 1 

The decision thus given was in accordance with Charles's 

principles of government. In political matters he demanded 

from his subjects the strict observance of the law, 

Importance 1-11 i i ,/- T 

of this de- whilst he reserved to himself a discretionary power 
to modify it according to circumstances, or, in other 
words, according to his own wishes. The same principle was 
now to be applied to ecclesiastical affairs. The habitual practice 
of congregations, the feelings and prejudices of the parishioners 
were to be set at naught, in order that a law passed in another 
age and under other conditions might be enforced against them. 
Whilst no regard was to be paid to the congregations, a discre- 
tionary power was to remain in the hands of the bishops to 
modify and apply the law as they thought best. 

The working of such a principle would depend on the 
amount of discretion which the bishops happened to possess. 
Used to smooth away asperities, and to modify the 
ibnofthe hard rule of the law in accordance with the devo- 
tional tendencies of various congregations, such a 
power might have been productive of the greatest advantages. 
It might have facilitated the passage from the old world of en- 
forced conformity to the new world of diversity and life. It 
was not so that Charles and Laud understood the discretion 
which they claimed. What they asserted was the right of the 
bishop to set aside the spirit of the law and the wishes of the 
congregation at one and the same time. 2 In this way they 
simply dealt a death-blow to the Elizabethan compromise which 
Williams had attempted to revive. That compromise, em- 
bodied on rubric and canon, plainly contemplated a table to be 
moved from one place to another at the time of administration. 

1 Prynne, Cant. Doom, 87 ; Latufs Works, iv. 225. This judgment 
quite accounts for the fact that the laity did not afterwards appeal to the 
couns. They had no chance of obtaining a hearing. 

1 It is true that Charles laid stress on the fact that only five persons 
had appealed. But without further inquiry, this fact was unimportant. 
The poorer or less influential members of the congregation may have left 
their case to be represented by the five. 


The King's decision deliberately avoided any recognition of 
this fact. If, under cover of interpreting the law, Charles had 
not openly violated the law, he had at least given every en- 
couragement to its evasion. 

No doubt, if the Elizabethan compromise was to be set 
aside, the practice recommended by Laud was more commend- 
The question a ^le on the score of decency than that which had 
of decency ^ een generally adopted. It was not becoming that 
a table used for purposes upon which both parties looked with 
reverence should stand where men could put their hats on it, 
scribble accounts on it, or sit on it. The irreverent action was 
doubtless in many cases a symbol of an irreverent mind. A 
church was often looked upon as a place in which sermons 
were to be heard comfortably, and not as a house of prayer, 
andprin- " Pews," said the witty Bishop Corbet, "are become 
cipie. tabernacles with rings and curtains to them. There 

wants nothing but beds to hear the word of God on." l The 
position of the communion-table could never be a question of 
mere decency. The table at the east was the outward expres- 
sion of one set of religious ideas. The table in the centre was 
the outward expression of another set of religious ideas. Eliza- 
beth had done her best awkwardly it might be to avoid a 
conflict between them. Laud now threw compromise aside. 
If the decision in the case of St. Gregory's was to be enforced 
upon all other parish churches in England, a tempest might be 
raised which it would be difficult to lull. 

It was hardly likely that the temptation to convert this de- 
cision into a uniform rule would be avoided. As vacancies 
Indian occurred the sees were being filled with bishops 
bishops. a f ter laud's own mind. Juxon, who had succeeded 
Laud as President of St. John's, now succeeded him as Bishop 
of London. Noted as he was for the suavity of his manners 
and the placability of his disposition, he had no kindness to 
spare for nonconformists. Upon Harsnet's death, Neile, so 
lately translated to Winchester, was translated to York, and 
Laud had the satisfaction of knowing that the Northern Arch- 

1 Corbet's speech to the clergy, April 29, 1634, S. I 1 . Dom. cclxvi. 58. 


bishopric was in the hands of a disciplinarian as strict as himself. 
Pierce went to Bath and Wells, Corbet to Norwich, Bancroft 
to Oxford, Lindsell to Peterborough, Curie to Winchester, all 
of them men ready to carry out the schemes of the Archbishop. 
Morton, who atoned for Calvinistic opinions in theology by his 
respect for the ceiemonies of the Church, followed Howson at 

Laud's anxiety to secure uniformity in England led him to 
cast suspicious glances across the sea. It is true that he never 
The English troubled himself with the condition of the Continental 
theComi?" "Protestants. He never dreamed of establishing an 
nent Anglican propaganda among the Dutch, the French, 

or the Germans. When John Durie, a Scotch clergyman who 
had been attached to the household of Sir James Spens, came 
to England to ask for means to enable him to travel in order to 
bring about a union between the Lutheran and the Calvinistic 
Churches of the Continent he met wilh but a languid support 
Irom the Archbishop. Laud held it to be his business to re- 
duce the Church of England to order, not to meddle with other 
churches. He could speak without irritation of Presbyterianism 
beyond the sea so long as the Presbyterians were not subjects 
of King Charles ; but it was altogether another matter if 
Englishmen acquired Presbyterian habits abroad. Although it 
might be of little importance to him how these men prayed or 
preached at the Hague or Rotterdam, it might be that they 
would some time or another return to England, bringing with 
them an infection which might taint the flock under his care. 

It seemed indeed that as soon as Englishmen engaged in 

commerce left their native soil, their first thought was to throw 

1632. away the Prayer-book. One day, as Pennington was 

The Ham- lying in the Elbe off Hamburg, he was asked to 

burg congre- J 

gation. allow Dr. Ambrose, a clergyman on board, to preach 
m the English church. When the time came for the service 
to commence, Ambrose called for a Bible and Prayer-book. A 
Bible was easily forthcoming, but no Prayer-book was to be 
had. Ambrose drew one out of his pocket, and began reading. 
The congregation was soon in an uproar, arid the officials 
begged him to desist. "If you will have no prayers," he 


replied, " you shall have no sermon," and walked out of the 
church, 1 In the Netherlands the Prayer-book was equally 
Thecongre- neglected. John Forbes, who had been expelled 
fhe'Naher- ^ rom Scotland for maintaining the independence of 
lands. t h e General Assembly against James, 2 preached in 

the Merchant Adventurers' church at Delft. Hugh Peters pre- 
sided over a congregation of Englishmen at Rotterdam, and 
drew his salary from the States-General. 3 These and other 
English churches were organised after the Presbyterian or 
Separatist model, with elders and deacons. The opinions 
which prevailed were embodied in a book written by Dr. Ames, 
the Fresh suit against human eereinonies. "We," he wrote, "as 
becometh Christians, stand upon the sufficiency of Christ's in- 
stitutions for all kinds of worship, and that exclusively. The 
word," say we, "and nothing but the word in matters of religious 
worship." "The prelates rise up on the other side, and will 
needs have us allow and use certain human ceremonies of 
religion in our Christian worship. We desire to be excused, as 
holding them unlawful." 4 

The difference between Laud and the extreme Puritans 
could not be more sharply expressed. Laud did not see that 
he was doing his best to make Ames's theory popular. As yet, 
by Ames's own confession, only a very small minority adopted 
it in England. Already, however," English clergymen deprived 
for nonconformity were flocking over to Holland, and it was 
not without reason that Laud feared that the principles which 
they were sowing in the Netherlands would one day bear fruit 
in England. 

Pressure might easily be brought to bear on the Delft 
congregation, which was supported by the Merchant Adven- 
turers. Sir William Boswell, the English Minister at the Hague, 
was directed to see that Laud's instructions were carried out, 
l633- and he had Misselden, the deputy of the company, 
March. on hi s gide. Forbes himself, now too old to en- 
gage in further contest, expressed his readiness to resign his 

1 Heylyn, Cypr. Angl. 219. " See Vol. I. pp. 309-316. 

1 Breretoti's Travels, 6. 4 Fresh Suit. Pref. Sig. h 


office. 1 He was summoned to England, gave up his relations 

with the church at Delft, and was succeeded by a minister 

l634 . chosen by Laud. In the summer of 1634 the Prayer- 

The Prayer, book was read in the Merchant Adventurers' church, 

book intro- . . . 

duced. much to the dissatisfaction of those who were com- 
pelled to listen to its unaccustomed sound. 2 

In the English regiments in the Dutch service, the practice 

varied with the disposition of the colonel. In the regiment 

1632. commanded by Lord Vere of Tilbury, the veteran 

chaplains in ^Q as gj r Horace Vere, had commanded in the 

the English 

regiments. Palatinate, a few prayers taken from the Prayer- 
book were used by the chaplain, Stephen Gofle, in the summer 
j6 33 . of 1632. The Dutch Council of State, by which the 
April. chaplains were paid, took umbrage, and directed 
that no novelties should be introduced. Many of the English 
officers, however, took Goffe's side, and the Prayer-book was 
sent by the Council to the Divinity professors of Leyden for 
examination. Boswell took high ground, bidding the pro- 
fessors to consider 'into what a labyrinth they might cast 
themselves ' if they presumed to pass judgment on the Liturgy 
of the Church of England. The professors drew back, and 
contented themselves with suggesting the danger of allowing 
English bishops to exercise jurisdiction in the Netherlands. 
Eoswell having tamed the professors, turned to the Council of 
State. English soldiers, he said, had always used their Prayer- 
book. They were fed with it as with their mothers' milk. As 
the officers were mainly on Laud's side, the recalcitrant chap- 
lains were removed and replaced by others more conformable. 
The more independent English congregations were beyond 
the reach of Laud. Hugh Peters continued to preach at 
Rotterdam against innovation and corruption. 3 Before long 

1 Instructions to Boswell, Aug. 2, 1632 ; Declaration of the Merchant 
Adventurers, Nov. 27 ; Misselden to Windebank, Jan. 22, 1633 ; Boswell 
to Coke, March 8 ; Order of the States-General, April - : Boswell to 
Coke, April 30, S. P. Holland. 

2 Boswell to Coke, Sept. S, $ P> Holland. Goffe to Sheldon, Feb. 3; 
laud and Juxon to the Merchants, June 21, S. P. Dom. cclx. 13 : cclxx. 3. 

* Covenant of Hugh Peters, Dec. 10, 1633, 6". P. Dom. cclii. 12. 

1633 NEW ENGLAND. 317 

he was joined by John Davenport, one of the late feoffees, 
who hoped to instal himself as minister of a congre-- 

congrega- gation at Amsterdam. To Boswell's glee, the Dutch 
magistrates of that Calvinistic city had their own 

notions about orthodoxy which Davenport was unable to satisfy, 
and it was only in New England that he at last found 

1 he Massa- . ?_.. r i j 

chusetts a refuge. ' 1 here was, in fact, but one spot of land 
under English rule where the principles and practices 
proscribed in England were predominant. During the two years 
which followed Winthrop's emigration to New England, only 
three hundred and forty persons had followed in his steps. 
No danger was apprehended at home from so small a num- 
ber of malcontents, and when charges were brought against 
them in England they met with but a cool reception from the 
Council. In January 1633 a complaint against the colonists 
was dismissed, and the King declared distinctly that ' he would 
have them severely punished who did abuse his Governor and 
the Plantation.' Some of the Privy Councillors added 'that 
his Majesty did not intend to impose the ceremonies of the 
Church of England ' in Massachusetts, ' for that it was con- 
sidered that it was the freedom from such things that made 
people come over.' 

In 1633, however, probably through the increasing strictness 
of ecclesiastical discipline at home, the emigration increased. 
In the course of the year seven hundred persons crossed the 
seas, amongst whom was John Cotton of Boston, and other 
leading Puritan divines. The English Government took alarm 
lest the example of the successful establishment of extreme 
Puritanism in America should give encouragement to those 
who aimed at the realisation of the Puritan ideal on the eastern 
side of the Atlantic. 2 A cry came up to Laud from 
Emigration Ipswich that six score emigrants were preparing for 
Engird a voyage across the ocean, and that six hundred 
more were soon to follow. The kingdom, said his 
informant, would be depopulated. Trade would be ruined. 
Bankrupts would assert that they were flying from the cere- 

1 Bo? well to Coke, Dec. 4, 1633 ; Jan. 2, 1634, S. P. Holland. 
3 Palfrey, Hist, of New England, i. 364. 


monies when they were in reality flying from their creditors. 
Feb. 28. An Order in Council at once prohibited the sailing 
mi!ted r under of tne vessels - A vveek later , however, a fresh order 
conditions. was issued. Masters of ships would be allowed to 
carry emigrants upon entering into bonds to punish all persons 
on board guilty of blasphemy, as well as to compel the attend- 
ance of passengers and crew upon the daily service of the 
Prayer-book. 1 

A flying separatist was not likely to be so squeamish as to 

refuse liberty on the condition of a compulsory attendance for 

a few weeks upon a service which he abhorred read 

April i. l 

Proceedings perfunctorily by a ship's captain. At home extreme 
separatists nonconformity had received an impulse from Laud's 
at home. proceedings. In April the High Commission thought 
it necessary to call upon the justices of the peace to make 
search for those sectaries who, ' under pretence of repetition of 
sermons,' kept 'private conventicles and exercises of religion 
by the laws of the realm prohibited.' 2 

If Laud was intolerant whenever Church order and disci- 
pline were concerned, the Puritans whom he combated were 
The Puritan no ^ ess intolerant when they believed that the in- 
Sabbath. terests of morality were concerned. No greater con- 
trast can be drawn than between the Puritan Sabbath and the 
traditional Sunday of the Middle Ages. The Puritan, how- 
ever, was not content with passing the day in meditation or 
self-examination unless he could compel others to abandon 
not merely riotous and disorderly amusements, but even those 
forms of recreation to which they and their fathers had been 
accustomed from time immemorial. The precepts of the 
Fourth Commandment were, according to his interpretation, 
of perpetual obligation. The Christian Lord's Day was but 
the Jewish Sabbath, and it was the duty of Christian magistrates 
to enforce its strict observance. The opponents of Puritanism 
took a precisely opposke view. The institution of the Christian 

1 Dade to Laud, Feb. 4, S. P. Dom. cclx. 17 ; Council Register, 
Feb. 21, 28. 

* The Commissioners to the Justices of the Peace, April i, S. 1\ Dom. 
cclxv. 6. 


Sunday, they argued, had been handed down simply by the 
oldest Church tradition, and it was therefore for the Church 
to say in what manner it should be observed. Nor could the 
Church, as a loving mother, forget that the mass of her children 
were hardly worked during six days of the week, and that it 
would be cruelty to deprive them of that relaxation which they 
had hitherto enjoyed. 

The question assumed a practical shape through a dispute 
which had recently arisen in Somerset. It had long been a 
The Somer- custom in that and in the neighbouring counties to 
setwakts. \^Q\& feasts under the name of wakes on the day 
of the saint to whom the parish church was dedicated. In 
the sixteenth century these wakes were, for the most part, 
transferred to the preceding or the following Sunday. Such 
convivial gatherings always afford a temptation to coarse and 
unrefined natures, and the wakes not unfreqently ended in 
drunkenness and in the indulgence of the lower passions. In 
interference the days of Queen Elizabeth the judges of assize 
ofthejudges. an( j j^g j us tj c es of the peace had forbidden them 
as unlawful meetings for tippling. In 1615, two manslaughters 
having been committed at one of these festivals, a more strin- 
gent order was issued, in which ' the continual profanation of 
God's Sabbath' was for the first time mentioned. In 1627 
the judges directed that this order should be yearly published 
1632. by every minister in his parish church, and a return 
March. ma( j e o f those who had rendered obedience to this 

Richardson s 

order. command. In 1632 these directions were reissued 
by Chief Justice Richardson. 

Others besides the Puritans of the county gave their support 
to Richardson. Lord Poulett, who had thrown all his influence 
on the side of the Crown in the days of Buckingham, headed 
a petition against the wakes. On the other hand, Sir Robert 
Phelips, who had been drawing nearer to the Court ever since 
the disturbance at the end of the last session, complained to 
Laud, and Laud complained to the King, of the conduct of 
the judges. 1 

1 In a letter from the King to Phelips, dated Aug. 30, 1629 (Hist. 
A/SS. Reports, iii. 282', Charles asks him to look to his interest rather 


Laud was specially indignant at the presumption of the 
judges in directing the clergy to read their orders in church, 
Laud's inter- which he regarded as an interference with the juris- 
ference. diction of the bishop. The King approved of his 
objection, and sent a message to Richardson requiring him to 
ifi ^ revoke the order at the next Lent Assizes. Richard- 
Richaidson son took no notice of the message. Before the 
order dis- * summer assizes ' Charles repeated his directions in 
respectfully. p erson The judge did not any longer venture to 
refuse obedience, but he took care to show that he was acting 
under compulsion. 

Charles lost patience. Richardson was summoned before 
a Committee of the Council. Laud rated him soundly for his 
is rated by disobedience. He left the room with tears in his 
Laud. eyes. "I have been almost choked," he said, "with 

a pair of lawn sleeves." He was forbidden ever to ride the 
Western Circuit again. 

Laud had already written to Pierce, the new bishop of _the 
diocese, requesting him to ask the opinion of some ministers 
NOV. 5. in the county. The bishop's report was doubtless too 
Bisho" f highly coloured. The seventy-two ministers to whom 
Pierce. he directed his questions were probably not selected 
at random, and they must have known what sort of answer would 
be acceptable to their ecclesiastical superiors ; still it is difficult 
to set aside their evidence altogether. Friendships, they said, 
were cemented, and old quarrels made up at these gatherings. 
The churches were better frequented than on any other Sun- 
day in the year. " I find also," added Pierce, " that the people 
generally would by no means have these feasts taken away; 
for when the constables of some parishes came from the assizes 
about tv;o years ago, and told their neighbours that the judges 
would put down these feasts, they answered that it was very 
hard if they could not entertain their kindred and friends once 
a year to praise God for his blessings, and to pray for the King's 

than to the favour of the multitude, an expression which would hardly have 
been used if Phelips had not separated himself from Eliot, All that ve 
know of Phelips during the rest of his life points to the same inference. 
1 Prynoe gives the date of this as 1634, which must be a mistake. 


Majesty, under whose happy government they enjoyed peace 
and quietness, and they said they would endure the judge's 
penalties rather than they would break off their feast-days. It 
is found also true by experience that many suits in law have 
been taken up at these feasts by mediation of friends, which 
could not have been so soon ended in Westminster Hall." 

The Bishop then pointed out what he considered to be the 
real motive for the objection taken. The precise sort, he said, 
disliked the feasts because they were held upon Sundays, ' which 
they never call but Sabbath days, upon which they would have 
no manner of recreation.' Some of the ministers whom he had 
consulted were of the contrary opinion. They thought that ' if 
the people should not have their honest and lawful recreations 
upon Sundays after Evening Prayer, they would go either into 
tippling-houses, and there upon their ale-benches talk of matters 
of the Church or State, or else into conventicles.' l 

Without waiting for Pierce's reply, Charles ordered the re,- 
publication of his father's Declaration of Sports. The late 
Qct IQ King, he said, had 'prudently considered that, if 
Repubiica- these times were taken from them, the meaner sort 
^DecUrafion which labour hard all the week should have no re- 
af 'sports. cr eations at all to refresh their spirits.' Once more 
it was announced from the throne that as soon as the Sunday 
afternoon service came to an end the King's ' good people ' 
were not to 'be disturbed, letted, or discouraged from any lawful 
recreation, such as dancing, either men or women, 
archery for men, leaping, vaulting, or any other such 
harmless recreation, nor from having of May-games, Whit ales 
and morris dances, and the setting up of maypoles, and other 
sports therewith used, so as the same be had in due and 
convenient time without impediment or neglect of divine 
service.' 2 

As yet the only notion of liberty entertained by either of 
the Church parties was the removal of restrictions which the 

1 Prynne, Cant. Doom, 128. Heylyn, Cypr. Angl. 241. Laud's 
Works, iv. 133. The King to Phelips, May z. Order to Phelips and 
Richardson, Nov. 12, Hist. MSS. Reports, iii. 286. 

2 Rushiaortk, ii. 193. 

VOL. vij. y 


opposite party considered it all-important to impose. The 
Puritan objected to the compulsory observance of the Laudian 
ceremonies. Laud objected to the compulsory observance of 
the Puritan Sabbath. 

It was necessary that the King's intentions should be as 
widely known as possible. As in the last reign, the readiest 
iheDsda- w ^y seemed to be to order the clergy to read the 
ration 10 oe ]) ec i ara ti O n from the pulpit. Once more the old 

read III f m 

churches. difficulty occurred. There were many amongst the 
clergy to whom the Declaration was mere profanity, and some 
of these had the courage to act upon their opinions. One 
London clergyman read the Declaration first, and the ten com- 
mandments afterwards. " Dearly beloved," he then said, " ye 
have heard the commandments of God and man, obey which 
you please." 1 Others preserved an obstinate silence. 2 Many 
were suspended or deprived for their refusal. It is true that 
Richardson and the Somerset justices had not scrupled to 
require the clergy to read an announcement of an opposite 
character. Laud was nothing loth to follow their example. 
In his eyes a minister was bound, like a constable or a justice 
of the peace, to communicate the intentions of the Government 
to the people, whenever he was ordered to do so by the proper 
ecclesiastical authorities. If the Church gained in organisation 
in Laud's hands, the gain was compensated by the loss of much 
of its spiritual influence. 

If Charles was unwise in peremptorily directing the clergy 
to read a manifesto which many of them regarded as sinful, his 
conduct on the main question had been eminently 
Belief in judicious. He was equally judicious in dealing with 
witchcraft. ano th er cas e upon which the wisest men were, in that 
age, likely to pronounce unwisely. 

The belief in the reality of witchcraft was strongly rooted 
in the minds of the population. James L, in his book on 
Demonology, had only echoed opinions which were accepted 
freely by the multitude, and were tacitly admitted without 

1 Garrard to Went worth, Dec. 6, Strafford Letters, i. 1 66. 

2 Laud's Works, iv. 255. Prynne, Cant. Doom, 148. 


inquiiy by the first intellects of the day. Bacon and Raleigh 
alike took the existence of witches for granted. Reginald 
Scot, indeed, wise before his time, had in 1584, discoursed to 
ears that would not hear on the shallowness of the evidence by 
which charges of witchcraft were sustained, but even Reginald 
Scot's >;*- Scot did not venture to assert that witchcraft itself 
'mtchrafl. was a fi c ti n - A few years later, Harsnet, who rose 
Hareiwt's t b e Bishop of Norwich and Archbishop of York, 
impostures, charged certain Jesuits and priests with imposture in 
pretending to eject devils from possessed persons, in sheer for- 
getfulness of the fact that these priests did no more than take in 
sober earnestness the belief which was everywhere around them. 
There was, however, a slight indication that the tide was begin- 
ning to turn in The Witch of Edmonton, a play pro- 

The Witch i * , T i i ^ -i i 

pf Edmon- duced on the London stage about 1622, the authors 
of which directed the compassion of their hearers to 
an old woman accused of having entered into a league with 
Satan, in order that she might obtain the power of inflicting 
diseases upon her neighbours and injury upon their cattle and 
their crops. Yet even here the old woman was treated as being 
in actual possession of the powers which she claimed. The 
sympathy of the audience was demanded for her, not because 
she was unjustly accused, but because she was driven to seek 
infernal aid by the brutality and ill-usage of her neighbours, 
who called her a witch long before she was one, and who beat 
her and ill-treated her in consequence. 

Even this amount of sympathy was rarely asked for in 
London, and could never be looked for in country districts. 
Lancashire was at that time the poorest county in 
shire^ England t and the least likely to shake off a prevalent 

superstition. In 1612 a whole bevy of miserable 
women had been hanged at Lancaster upon a charge of witch- 
craft, and a younger generation was prepared to repeat the 
accusations which had found credence in the days of their 
fathers. At the spring assizes in 1634 there were numerous 
condemnations, and Sir William Pelham, a gentleman of 
fortune and education, gravely expressed a suspicion that the 
Lancashire witches had had a hand in raising the storm by 

Y 2 


which the King's safety had been endangered in crossing from 
Burntisland to Leith in the preceding summer. 1 

Fortunately the judge who presided over the trial had his 

doubts, and reprieved the prisoners till he had time to com- 

j une> municate with the Council. Bishop Bridgeman, the 

m!ba r tion a by Bishop of Chester, was accordingly directed to ex- 

the bishop, amine into the case of the seven condemned women. 

He reported that three of them were already dead, and that 

another was sick beyond hope of recovery. Of the remaining 

three, he described Margaret Johnson, a widow of 

Margaret sixty years, as the penitent witch. " I will not," she 

son> said, " add sin to sin. I have already done enough, 
yea too much, and will not increase it. I pray God I may re- 
pent." This victim of the hallucinations of an unsound mind 
confessed herself to be a witch, and was spoken of by the 
bishop as ' more often faulting in the particulars of her actions, 
as one having a strong imagination of the former, but of too 
weak a memory to retain or relate the others.' The devil, she 
affirmed, had often met her as a gentleman dressed in black, 
offering her power to hurt whom she would in exchange for 
her soul. At last she consented, and took from him money 
which vanished immediately. Afterwards he appeared in the 
shapes of various animals and sucked her blood. She had still, 
she said, the mark of the wound which he had inflicted on her 

The other two denied the truth of the accusation entirely. 
Frances Dicconson stated that she had been falsely accused 
of Frances f changing herself into a dog by a boy named 
Dicconson, Robinson, whose father had a quarrel with her 
husband, and that the second witness had fallen out with her 
and of Mary over a Dar g am f r some butter. Mary Spencer, a 
Spencer. young woman of twenty, said that her accuser bore 
malice against her parents. Her father and mother had been 
convicted of witchcraft at the last assizes, and were now dead. 
She repeated the Creed and the Lord's Prayer, and told the 
bishop that she defied the devil and all his works. A story 
had been told that she used to call her pail to follow her as 
1 Pelham to Conway, May 16, S. P. Dom. cclxviii. 12. 


she ran. The truth was that she would often trundle it down 
hill, and call to it to come after her if she outstripped it. When 
she was in court she could have explained everything, ' but the 
wind was so loud and the throng so great, as she could not 
hear the evidence against her.' 

The last touch completes the tragedy of the situation. 
History occupies itself perforce mainly with the sorrows of the 
educated classes, whose own pens have left the record of their 
wrongs. Into the sufferings of the mass of the people, except 
when they have been lashed by long- continued injustice into 
frenzy, it is hard to gain a glimpse. For once the veil is lifted, 
and we see, as by a lightning flash, the forlorn and unfriended 
girl to whom the inhuman laws of her country denied the 
services of an advocate, baffled by the noisy babble around her 
in her efforts to speak a word on behalf of her innocence. The 
very bishop who now examined her was under the influence of 
the legal superstition that every accused person was the enemy 
of the King. He had heard, he said, that the father of the 
boy Robinson had offered, for forty shillings, to withdraw his 
charges against Frances Dicconson, ' but such evidence being, 
as the lawyers speak, against the King,' he ' thought it not meet 
without further authority to examine.' l 

Accused and accusers were summoned to London. Seven 
surgeons and midwives reported that Margaret Johnson had 
been deceived in supposing that there was any mark 
The truth on her body which could be appealed to as evidence 
out ' that her blood had been sucked. 2 The boy Robin- 
son, separated from his father, blurted out the truth to the 
King's coachman. He had heard stories told of witches pnd 
their doings, and had invented the hideous tale to save him- 
self a whipping for neglecting to bring home his mother's 
cows. 3 The three women were admitted to an interview with 
the King, and were assured that their lives were no longer 
in danger. Yet even Charles did not think fit to set them at 

1 Bishop Bridgeman to Coke and Windebank, June 15, S. P. Dotn. 
cclxix. 85. . 

? Certificate of surgeons and midwives, July 2, ibid, ccclxxi. 9. 
* Examination of Robinson, July 16, ibid, cclxxi. 91. 


liberty. 1 Still less had the detection of imposture any effect 
,635. upon popular opinion. In the spring of the following 
Fresh cases, year, four more women were condemned to death as 
witches at the Lancashire assizes. Bishop Bridgeman, who 
was again ordered to make inquiries, found that two of the 
number had died in gaol, and that, of the remaining two, one 
had been condemned on the accusation of a madman and on 
the evidence of a beggar-woman of ill-repute. As to the other, 
there was nothing against her, except that a piece of flesh of 
the size of a hazel-nut grew on her right ear, the end of which 
being bloody was supposed to have been sucked by a familiar 
spirit. 2 These two women were doubtless pardoned, as the 
others had been, without being liberated. It might, perhaps, 
have endangered their lives to set them free. Their neighbours 
were no more inclined to disbelieve in the reality of witchcraft 
because certain persons had been falsely alleged to be witches, 
than men would now be inclined to disbelieve in the reality of 
murder because certain persons had been falsely alleged to be 
jg murderers. Two playwrights, Brome and Heywood, 

The witches had already seen that it would strike the fancy of 
the public to bring the Lancashire witches on the 
stage. Even the step gained in The Witch of Edmonton was 
lost in the play now produced. Its authors gave no "hint of 
any such ill-treatment as might have led the victims of super- 
stition astray. All the lies of the boy Robinson were accepted 
as undoubted truths. A London audience was called to listen 
credulously to stories of women transformed into dogs and of 
pails which trundled along the ground of their own accord. 
The leading incident of the drama is the bringing home to a 
gentleman, who had hitherto been sceptical on the subject of 
witchcraft, of the conviction that his own wife is one of the 
accursed crew, a conviction so complete that he cheerfully 
delivers her up to the gibbet, though his married life had been 
one of happiness and affection. 

1 In .1636, F. Dicconson and M. Spencer, with eight other persons, 
were still confined as witches in Lancaster gaol. Faring/on Papers, 27. 
Chetham Society. 

2 Bishop Bridgeman to Coke, March 13, May 1 1, 1635, Melbourne MSS. 


It was not to be expected that the dramatic writers of the 
day should raise themselves far above the ignorance which 
immorality prevailed universally around. Unhappily they had 
of the stage. ever y temptation to stoop to pander to the low and 
vulgar tastes of the audiences by whose applause they lived. 
Even Massinger, whose ideal of an unswerving and self-sustained 
virtue was nearly as high as that of Milton himself, 1 was guilty 
of introducing scenes of purposeless obscenity which were 
utterly unneeded for the delineation of character or the ad- 
vancement of the plot. 2 In vain he sought to still the remon- 
strances of his conscience by arguing that the mere representa- 
tion of evil conveyed a reproof to those who had come to laugh 
at the coarse jest or to gloat over the indecent action. 3 It 
may be that the half-felt reluctance injured his popularity. It 
is certain that Beaumont and Fletcher were, far more than 
Massinger, the favourites with the playgoers of the day, and 
Beaumont and Fletcher had never been tired of repeating in 
ever-varying forms the wearying tale of the siege laid by vice to 
the defences of female chastity. In their hands the woman who 
succumbs to temptation is only less repulsive than the woman 
who resists the seducer. Familiarity with evil is the same in 
both, and the absence of maidenly purity repels the more when 
it is associated with self-conscious vanity. The reader turns 
away sickened from the contemplation of the female rout, to 
seek, if he is wise, a health-giving draught from the cup of the 
master who drew the lineaments of Imogen and Cordelia. 

There was much room for the lash of a wise and sympa- 
thetic critic. Unluckily the scourge was snatched by Prynne, 

1632. and Prynne never handled any argument without 
mastix. making it repulsive to those whom he sought to 
profit. He had long brooded over the iniquities presented in 
the theatres, and somewhere about 1624 had shown to Dr. 
Goad a portion of the book which he afterwards issued to the 

1 Professor Hales pointed out to me the Miltonic character of the scene 
between Antiochus and the Courtesan in Believe as You List. 

2 An instance of this is in the conversation of the Gentlewoman with 
Francisco in the Duke of Milan, iii. 2. 

3 The Roman Actor, i. 3. 


world under the title of Histriomastix ; A Scourge of Stage 
Players. He took special offence at the then prevalent custom 
of employing boys to represent female characters. As if it 
were not enough to dwell upon the cruelty of placing young 
boys in situations which could hardly fail to fill their minds 
with corrupting thoughts, he fell back upon the argument that 
under all circumstances it was a deadly sin for anyone to appear 
in the dress of the opposite sex. Goad was not convinced. 
"If," he said, "a man in his house were besieged by pagans, 
would he not disguise himself in his maid's apparel to escape?" 
"I would rather die first," was the reply of the unbending 
theorist. So absolute a method of treating moral questions 
deprived Prynne's arguments of all weight with reasonable men. 

To such a writer it appeared unnecessary to study minutely 
the phases of the evil which he unsweepingly condemned. 
There was no measure in his indignation. Stage plays, from 
Antigone or King Lear down to the last tale of incest which 
had issued from the brain of Ford, 1 were all alike treated as 
the spawn of the devil, as hateful provocatives to drunkenness 
and lust. The fathers of the Church, the philosophers and 
historians of antiquity, the divines of more recent times, were 
equally available as evidence. The author's original vitupera- 
tion was swelled by a mass of extract and quotation till it 
covered more than a thousand wearisome pages. The reader 
is tempted to doubt the existence of an evil which is assailed 
by abuse so unmeasured, and of the details of which the writer 
appears to know so little. Prynne had indeed scarcely ever 
entered a theatre, and there is no evidence that he had even 
read the plays of his own day with any sort of attention. 

By 1630 the book, much increased in bulk, was ready to 
, be given to the world. Abbot's chaplain glanced 


The book over the sheets with a friendly eye and licensed it 
for the press. The printing was finished about the 
end of October or the beginning of November 1632. 2 

1 Tis pity she's a whore was printed in 1633, and had no doubt been 
upon the stage for some months. 

- The dates are from Prynne's letter to Laud of June II, 1634. Docu- 
ments relating to Prynne y Camd. Soc. lie there says that the book was 

1632 <HISTR1OMASTIX: 329 

Heylyn, Laud's chaplain, pounced upon the book as soon 
as it issued from the press, to examine it with unscrupulous 
malignity. One paragraph was specially offensive. In 1629, 
London had been visited by a company of French players 
which had offended English prejudices by assigning the female 
parts to actresses. The poor women were hooted from the 
stage and forced to return to their own country. Prynne's 
Prynne's wrath was moved as deeply by the appearance of 
female up " women upon the stage as it had been moved before 
actors. by the appearance of boys upon the stage. If indeed 
he had drawn attention to the indecency of exposing a young 
woman to the contamination of the scenes in which she would 
be expected to take part, he would have had on his side every 
man who held female modesty and innocence in respect. All 
this advantage he threw away by the unguarded violence of his 
attack. He did not ask that the theatre should be purified till 
its language became such as could be used with propriety in 
the presence of young and innocent women. He simply 
declared that at all times and under all circumstances female 
actors were notoriously deserving of the most degrading appel- 
lation which language can bestow upon a woman. 

Unluckily for Pryn-ne there was reason to believe that his 
words had a special application. About ten weeks after his 
last proof sheets were corrected, the Queen took part 
Queen at- in a slight dramatic performance, The Shepherd's 
tacked? Pastoral, from the pen of Walter Montague, 1 the 
second son of the Earl of Manchester, and Prynne after- 
wards argued that he could not possibly have aimed his 
shafts by anticipation at the royal actress. It is certain, 
however, that the intention of the Queen was known in 

' finished at the press about ten weeks before her Majesty's Pastoral, ' 
which, as we learn from SalveUi's News-Letter of Jan. , was acted on 
Jan. *, 1633. 

1 In the Museum Library is a copy dated 1629, the date which is 
usually given as that of the fiist edition. Uut as the comedy is said on the 
title-page to have been ' privately acted before the laic King Charles,' this 
is doubtless a misprint. As the publisher's name is not the same as that of 
the 1659 edition, it possibly ought to be 1649. Mr. Arbcr informs me 
that it is not entered in the Stationers' lists in 1629. 


October, about the very time that Prynne was completing his 
proofs, and that the incriminated passage appeared on the last 
page of the book which was then passing through his hands. 1 
Whether this attack were directly aimed at the Queen or not, 
there was enough in Prynne's pages to rouse indignation. 
Dancing was declared to be scandalous and of ill-repute, and 
it was well known that the Queen was fond of dancing. To 
look on at a play was to be a sharer in degrading wickedness, 
and both Charles and Henrietta Maria were lovers of the 
drama. Prynne too had declared it to be the duty of magis- 
trates to suppress stage-plays, and his warning might be inter- 
preted as charging the King with remissness in the performance 
of his duty. Nero's murder was spoken of as well deserved on 
account of his habit of frequenting plays, and an adverse critic 
might easily draw the inference that the author was of opinion 
that King Charles merited the same fate. Beyond the words 
to which exception was taken, there was a ring of Puritanism 
in the book which may well have given dire offence. 

Prynne was sent to the Tower. The High Commission 

Prynne sent waS tO deal W ^ tn mm ^ Or wor ds offensive tO the clergy. 

to the Tower. ^ prosecution for libel was at the same time com- 
menced against him in the Star Chamber. 

Prynne's bitterness of tone and the rashness of his denun- 
ciation awoke opposition beyond the precincts of the Court. 

,633. Scarcely had Charles returned from Scotland when 
rhe V in"s e of ^ G l earne d tnat tne I nns of Court were preparing a 

Court pre- masque to be presented to him as a token of the de- 
pare a ... 
masque. testation in which Prynne's coarse abuse was held by 

his brother lawyers. The arrangements were entrusted to men 
who were soon to be arrayed on opposite sides. Young Edward 
Hyde, with Noy, who was soon to be the inventor of ship- 
money, and Herbert who, as Attorney-General, was to impeach 
the five members, were joined with Bulstrode Whitelocke, the 
son of the judge, and the future Keeper of the Great Seal 
under the Commonwealth and Protectorate, and with Selden, 
who had been lately released from the prison into which he had 

1 Salvetti's News-Letters, Oct. - ? , Nov. -. 

20* 13 

1 634 * THE TRIUMPH OF PEACE! 331 

been cast as one of the prime movers of the disturbance in the 
last House of Commons. The display took place at Whitehall 

1634. on February 2. All the details were arranged with 
tonewatft- unusua ^ magnificence. Large sums had been ex- 
tion - pended on the dresses of the actors. The spectators 

were equally splendid in their attire. So crowded was the 
Banqueting Hall with gaily attired ladies and with gentlemen 
of rank and quality, that the King and Queen when they arrived 
had some difficulty in reaching their seats. After the perform- 
ance was at an end, some of the masquers were invited to dance 
with the Queen, and were flattered by her remark, that they 
were 'as good dancers as ever she saw.' Those who were less 
highly honoured had no difficulty in finding partners amongst 
the fairest and noblest ladies of the land. It was almost morn- 
ing when the festivities were brought to an end with a stately 
banquet. 1 

The masque itself, The Triumph of Peace, from the pen of 

Shirley, was free from all indecency of expression. Four days 

later The Gamester^ by the same writer, was acted in 

reb. 6. * 

Shirley's the presence of the King. As far as words went the 
ter ' play was innocent enough. It contained no coarse 
jests or gross expressions. For all that, the plot was profoundly 
immoral, and the plot had been suggested by Charles himself. 
The amusement is conveyed by situations in which criminal or 
vicious intentions are hindered by accidental circumstances 
from being carried into action, and the play as a whole is cal- 
culated to leave the audience under the impression that foul 
thoughts and desires defile not a man unless they have been 
realised in action. 2 It has often been said of Charles, that 
whatever his political failings may have been, he was at least 

1 Whitdocke, 19. 

2 See, as a further illustration, The Witty Fair One, by the same author, 
in which a libertine who is baffled in an attempt to seduce a lady is re- 
warded by the hand of that lady upon a mere profession to live virtuously 
hereafter. She is represented as herself perfectly modest and virtuous, but 
she lets herself make immodest proposals in jest simply because she does 
not mean lo allow them to be accepted, and she seems to have no notion 
that there is any corruption in the mind of her lover accruing from his 
former life. 


an artist and a Christian. The art of the play which he now 
patronised was in flagrant contradiction with the art of Shak- 
spere. Its morality was in no less flagrant contradiction with 
the morality of the Sermon on the Mount. 

The day after The Gamester was represented at Court, 
Prynne appeared before the Star Chamber. His own advocates 
Feb seem to have had little hope of an acquittal, and 
Star Cham- contented themselves with maintaining that his in- 
ings P a^nst tentions had been good, and with giving a milder 
interpretation to some of his strongest expressions. 
In the Court itself not a voice was raised in favour 
' e ' I7< of moderation. Even Richardson, who could be so 
severe on the drunken revels of the poor, had no word to say 
against the profligacy of the rich. Laud, who was no doubt 
delighted to aim a blow at so bitter an opponent of his eccle- 
siastical system as the author of Lame Giles, his baitings, de- 
clared that to speak of frequenters of plays as ' devils incarnate ' 
was a direct incitement to rebellion against a king who took 
pleasure in these entertainments. It was not true that plays 
were unlawful in themselves. " Take away the scurf and rub- 
bish which they are incident unto, they are things indifferent." 
As to the indecencies charged against them, 'if there be such 
things now, it is a scandal and not to be tolerated.' It was the 
business of the Lord Chamberlain and the Master of the Revels 
to see to that. 

Laud, in short, excused his own remissness on the ground 
that the licensing of plays was out of his own official province. 
Such an excuse carried with it its own condemnation. The 
charge brought was that in the King's Court a fountain of vice 
had been opened in the midst of the nation. Surely this 
concerned an Archbishop whose personal influence over his 
sovereign was greater than that of any prelate since the days 
of Wolsey. What were all the sins against uniformity to 
this, the hats placed by rude country peasants on the com- 
munion-table, or their slouching into church with their heads 
covered ? If Prynne's charge was true, Laud was but busy in 
cleaning the outside of the cup and the platter. If only a tithe 
of it was true, at least there would have been room for a man 


of generous instincts to find some excuse for indignation which 
had hurried the combatant against vice into rash and unseemly 

The sentence of the Court was extravagant in its brutality. 
Prynne was to be imprisoned for life, fined 5,ooo/., expelled 
The sen- from Lincoln's Inn, rendered incapable of returning 
to the practice of his profession, degraded from his 
degree in the University, and set in the pillory, where both his 
ears were to be cut off. 1 

Such a sentence was far more unjustifiable than that which 
had been passed four years before upon Leighton. Prynne 
had made no attack upon the constitution in Church or State. 
He had merely spoken in rude and intemperate language of 
amusements patronised by the King. Nevertheless there was 
no thought of remitting any part of his outrageous penalty. 
The fine indeed remained unpaid, but on May 7 one 
itsexecu- of Prymie's ears was shorn away at Westminster. 
Three days later his other ear was shorn away at 
Cheapside. Such copies of his book as could be found were 
burnt under the pillory so close to him that he was almost 
suffocated by the smoke. 2 The University of Oxford joyfully 
complied with the sentence, and thrust the author forth from 
its membership. 

Prynne's indomitable spirit was not to be crushed. In a 

long letter, couched in the most exasperating language, he re- 

june. plied to Laud's arguments, tore to shreds his defence 

Utterto 8 f theatres, and charged him with illegality in issuing 

Laud. a W arrant for the seizure of his books. 

Laud placed the letter in Noy's hands. The Attorney- 
General sent for the writer, and asked him whether it was in 

his handwriting. Prynne took it to the window on 
J une 10 - , ... . . 

He destroys pretence of examining it more closely, tore it into 

small fragments, and .flung the pieces out. "That," 
he said, " will never rise in judgment against me." 

1 WJiitelocke, 2.2. The report of the trial printed in Documents relating 
to Prynne, Camd. Soc. is far better than that in the State Trials, where the 
date is wrongly given as 1632-3. Laud's speech is in his Works, vi. 234. 

2 State Trials, iii. 586. Garrard to Wentworth, Straff. Letters, i. 260. 


The next day Prynne stood once more before the Star 

Chamber. Noy demanded that he might be prohibited from 

the use of pen and ink, and from going to church. 

is brought This was too much for Laud. He was harsh in his 

again before . j ,.,. , , . . . 

she star judgments upon offences the root and origin ot 
chamber. w hich he was unable to comprehend, but he was not 
cruel by nature. Noy's proposal struck upon ground which 
was common to the prisoner and himself. " I confess," he 
said, " I do not know what it is to be close prisoner, and to 
want books, pen, ink, and company." If a man were left alone 
in such a case, who could tell into what temptations he might 
fall ? Noy had said that Prynne was past all grace. If so, the 
more need he had of permission to go to church. As to the 
seizure of his books, it had been done without his knowledge, 
and he should have them back. Richardson, the 'jeering 
judge,' spoke in a different tone. " Let him have the Book 
of Martyrs, for the Puritans do account him a martyr." l 

The court appears to have inflicted no further penalty upon 
Prynne. Indeed his punishment was already so severe that it 
would be difficult to increase it. Yet there is no 
probabVnot evidence to show that popular indignation was roused 
unpopuar. ^ ^j g sen j- ence> Nothing is heard of any token of 
disapprobation shown in the streets as the masquers passed 
along to Whitehall, or even when, a few weeks later, they 
threaded their way through the City to repeat their exhibition 
at Guildhall at the King's command. No doubt there were 
not a few who regarded Prynne as an oracle. A lady had 
recently bequeathed a sum of money to Sion College for the 
purchase of books, accompanying her legacy with a request 
that Prynne's works might be the first to be added to the 
library. The only actual complaint heard was a cry from the 
privileged classes. " Most men," wrote D'Ewes, " were affrighted 
to see that neither his academical nor barrister's gown could 
free him from the infamous loss of his ears." 2 They com- 
plained, in short, not that Prynne was unjustly punished, but 

1 Prynne to Laud, June (?) Documents relating to Prynne. Rush- 
worth, ii. 247. Laud's Diary, Works, iii. 221. 

2 Autobiography, ii. 105. 

1634 MILTON'S ' COMUS* 335 

that his station in life was such that he ought not to be punished 
in such a way, whether he deserved it or not. 

The grosser and more palpable enormities of the stage felt 
the weight of Prynne's assault. The dramatic writers might 
express their contempt for him as scornfully as they 
ac'don'upon pleased. It is none the less true that from this time 
-. drama. ^^ p rO( j uct j ons became less openly indecent. For 
the subtler immorality of the drama, for the hateful teaching 
that the act alone is sinful, whilst the evil thought is blameless, 
Prynne's coarse vituperation afforded no remedy. That theme 
needed to be dealt with in a higher strain than that which the 
legal bookworm had at his command. The fitting answer to 
Prynne's railing was to embody pure thoughts and noble teach- 
ing in a dramatic form. No living Englishman was so capable 
of giving such a refutation as the singer of I? Allegro and 
// Penseroso. Milton soon found his opportunity. The Earl 
of Bridgewater, the son of Lord Chancellor Ellesmere, had 
attached himself to Buckingham with undeviating devotion. 
Like others who honoured Charles's favourite, he received his 
reward from Charles. In 1631 he was appointed President of 
Wales and the Marches. He did not take up his duties per- 
sonally till 1634, and the festivities with which his arrival at his 
official residence at Ludlow Castle was greeted, only took place 
Milton's m tne autumn of that year. For these festivities 
Camus. Milton prepared his Comus, at the instigation of his 
friend Henry Lawes, at that time the first musician in England. 
To the spectators seated in the castle hall, the fair young 
girl, Lady Alice Egerton, who with her brothers took the leading 
part in the performance, was doubtless the central figure in the 
evening's entertainment. We are no longer under the spell of 
that bright presence, but the spiritual beauty of the Lady of the 
Comus abides with us still. As yet Milton had not taken up a 
position of hostility to the Court, though he had already re- 
solved to abandon his youthful intention of finding a place in 
the ranks of the clergy. He did not hesitate to place his talents 
at the disposal of so thorough a Royalist as the new Lord 
President of Wales. He could not give his voice for the sour 
asperities of the Histriomastix. Shakspere and Jonson, with 


the older glories of the Athenian stage, had a place too deep 
in his reverence for that. But neither could he content himself 
with the uproarious jollities of the Inns of Court masquers. 
He had to appeal from Shirley and Ford to the great Shale - 
sperian models, and to bring before a courtly audience the 
lesson that purity of thought and nobility of intention are to be 
sought first, in order that high and virtuous action may follow. 
Even beauty itself, Milton held, was but the outward garment 
of virtue. 

" So dear to Heaven is saintly chastity 

That when a soul is found sincerely so, 

A thousand liveried angels lackey her, 

Driving far off each thing of sin and guilt, 

And in clear dream and solemn vision 

Tell her of things that no gross ear can hear 

Till oft converse with heavenly habitants 

Begin to cast a beam on the outward shape, 

The unpolluted temple of the mind, 

And turns it by degrees to the soul's essence, 

Till all be made immortal. But, when lust, 

By unchaste looks, loose gestures, and foul talk, 

But most by lewd and lavish acts of sin, 

Lets in defilement to the inward parts, 

The soul grows clotted by contagion, 

Imbodies and imbrutes lill she quite lose 

The divine property of her first being." ' 

1 The germ of this is perhaps in the Duke's words in Measure fof 
Measure (iii. i). "The hand that hath made you fair hath made you 
good : the goodness that is cheap in beauty makes beauty brief in good- 
ness ; but grace, being the soul of your complexion, shall keep the body 
of it ever fair." Afterwards, in pleading for Angelo, Isabella maintains 
the opposite position (v. I) : 

"For Angelo, 

His act did not o'ertake his bad intent ; 
And must be buried but as an intent 
That perished by the way : thoughts are no subjects ; 
Intents but merely thoughts." 

The thought of the first of these two passages findsj as was pointed out 
to me by Professor Hales, a still more striking expression in Spenser's 
Hymn of Beauty. Thus, for instance : 


The beautiful soul makes beautiful the outward form ; the 
base act debases the soul of him who commits it. This was 
Milton's highest message to the world. This was the witness 
of Puritanism at its best. This was 'the sage and serious 
doctrine of virginity,' of that singleness of heart and spirit which 
is the safeguard of purity in marriage or out of marriage. 

Between the ideal of womanhood formed by Milton in his 

youth and that of even such a man as Massinger there is a great 

gulf. To Milton the world is a place in which the 

Women of,, 111 n / xi 11 

Milton and lady can breaK the spells of Comus by the very force 
Massmger. o mnocence> fo Massinger it is a place to be 
shunned and avoided as altogether evil. His Camiola can 
only find rest by its renunciation. " Look," says the priest, 
when she declares her intention of spending the rest of her 
days in a nunnery 

" Look on this Maid of Honour, now 

Truly honoured in her vow 

She pays to heaven : vain delight 

By day, or pleasure of the night 

She no more thinks of. This fair hair 

(Favours for great kings to wear) 

" So every spirit, as it is most pure, 
And hath in it the more of heavenly light, 
So it the fairer body doth procure 
To habit in, and it more fairly dight 
With cheerful grace and amiable sight ; 
For of the soul the body form doth take ; 
For soul is form, and doth the body make." 

It is possible, on the other hand, that Milton was repelled by the lines 
put into the mouth of the infamous Giovanni by Ford in 'Tis pity s/ie'* a 
whore, published the year before (ii. 5) : 

" It is a principle which you have taught 
When I was yet your scholar, that the frame 
And composition of the mind doth follow 
The frame and composition of the body. 
So, where the body's furniture is beauty, 
The mind's must needs be virtue." 

The speech of Comus (706) looks very like a re'suwj of opinions which 
are sown broadcast in the dramas of the day. 


Must now be shorn ; her rich array 
Changed into a homely gray ; 
The dainties with which she was fed 
And her proud flesh pampered, 
Must not be tasted ; from the spring 
For wine, cold water we will bring, 
And with fasting mortify 
The feasts of sensuality." 

If Milton judged more truly of the great world around him, 
did not Massinger judge more truly of the world of the Court ? 
To the poets who were then in favour, the Carews 
and the Sucklings, a woman was no more than an 
enticing bodily form, whose capture might be the amusement 
of a few hours of leisure. F,ven with more serious men she 
was little more than a child of larger growth, capable of tender 
emotions and inspired with the spirit of sacrifice, but never to 
be treated as an equal. Wentworth himself, whose 
of Went- ' e affections were deep, and who wrote that ' the fellow- 
ship of marriage ought to carry with it more of love 
and equality than any other apprehension,' never thought of 
imparting his highest joys and sorrows to his wife. He wrote 
to her when absent of the gossip of the day, of marriages made 
and planned ; but if he is betrayed for a moment into the 
slightest hint of political news, he draws himself sharply up 
with ' What's all this to you wenches ? What's all this to 
you?' 1 

The state of female education was partly in fault. There 
were no Lady Jane Greys at Charles's Court. Anne of Den- 
Femaie mark had led the way in the race of frivolity, and 
education. Henrietta Maria had followed, in a more elegant way, 
in her predecessor's steps. The Queen herself, like her husband, 
The Queen's was looked up to as a model of conjugal devotion. 
Court - Her confessor was able to express his full assurance 
that no impure desire had ever crossed her mind ; 2 but she 

Wentworth's letters to his wife are published by Miss Cooper in her 
Life of WtntwortJi 

* Con to Card. Barberini, Aug. ^, Add. MSS. 15,389, fol. 196. 

1634 THE QUEEN'S COURT. 339 

had no abhorrence of vice in others. It was enough for her if 
a man or a woman was clever, witty, and amusing ; if a cour- 
tier could tell a story well, or make a good figure in a dance. 
Without seriousness of purpose herself, she gathered round her 
a frivolous and flighty crew, in which a serious thought was 

One of those to whose good stories the Queen most loved 
to listen was Henry Jermyn. Shortly before his confinement 
on account of the part which he had taken in the 
Henry challenge sent to Weston by Holland, he had se- 
duced Eleanor Villiers, one of the Queen's maids of 
honour, and a niece of the late Duke of Buckingham. With 
the prospect of becoming a mother, the poor girl confessed her 
shame, and the whole Villiers family angrily called upon the 
King to force Jermyn to make reparation to his victim by 
marrying her. The King consented, sent both parties to prison, 
and declared that, as he was certain that a promise of marriage 
had passed between them, Jermyn should either marry the lady 
or be banished for ever from the Court. Eleanor Villiers herself, 
however, distinctly admitted that there had been no promise 
of marriage. Her love for Jermyn, she said, was so great that 
she had made no conditions with him. Charles therefore con- 
tented himself with excluding his wife's favourite from Court. 
Henrietta Maria, however, could not long dispense with the 
amusement which he gave her, and she soon persuaded her 
husband to call him back again, to be the life and soul of her 
festive gatherings at Somerset House. 1 

In a Court in which Jermyn formed a principal figure the 

ideas which Massinger embodied in his Maid of Honour grew. 

There is a close connection between a low state of 

favourof'' female attainment and a superstitious reverence for 

cehbacy. ft ce ]j bate jjf^ j f the best to w h lc h a beautiful girl 

can look is to be flattered with empty nothings about the roses 
on her cheeks and the whiteness of her bosom, her higher 
nature will revolt against a life so empty and so purposeless. 

1 Examination of Eleanor Villiers, May 6, 1633, S. P. Dom. ocxxxviii. 
35. Clarendon, Life, i. 13. Garrard to Wentworth, Jan. 9, 1634, 
Strafford Letters, \. 174. 



She will look upon unmarried life as something holy and 
virtuous in itself, not as something preferable to the society of 
a coarse-minded and vulgar husband, or as affording special 
opportunities of usefulness. Even writers like Habington, who 
turned aside from the allurements of profligacy, did not succeed 
in painting married life in very attractive colours. His Castara, 
as for poetic purposes he termed his wife, was praised rather 
for her negative than for her positive qualities for her demure 
coyness in the presence of men, rather than as a living spring 
of influence for good upon her family and friends. Habington, 
as he writes, seems scarcely able to control his satisfaction that 
his beloved wife is not an adulteress. 

Such a tone of thought gave many an opening to the Jesuits. 
The Laudian ceremonies were often tried and found wanting. 
Laud himself was too hard and unbending, too care- 
outVemaie" ful of the framework of ecclesiastical life, to exercise 
admirers. i n fl uen ce over the heart' of woman. No leader of 
any great Church party before or since was ever so entirely 
without female admirers. The imagination was left untouched, 
and the devotional feeling was scarcely roused by the cry of 
obedience to the letter of the rubrics, which was the Beauty of 
Holiness to Laud. 

As yet the womanhood of England was nurtured in the 
great Protestant tradition. In the home of the citizen or the 
country gentleman, the wife was of far greater im- 
O f Engh?nd portance than she was in the household of a great 
Puritan. m j n i s ter of state. As a helper of the 

poor, or as the maintainer of kindliness amongst neighbours, 
she could share in the work of the master of the house ; and 
in the simple personal religion which she drew from the Bible 
and from a few text-books of Protestant theology, she found 
herself bound to her husband by a tie which secured his respect. 
There is a mingled strength and sweetness in the characters of 
the Englishwomen who confront us in the biographical sketches 
of the day the moment we leave the precincts of the Court. 
Margaret Winthrop, Isabella Twisden, and in a later generation 
Anne Murray and Alice Thornton offer but various develop- 
ments of the same type. It matters little whether in after times 


they range themselves from family association on the side of 
King or Parliament ; it matters little whether they seek support 
in their spiritual troubles in the Common Prayer-book or in 
Puritan books of devotion. The foundation of the character 
is essentially Protestant, if not Puritan. They seem to have 
caught the final adjuration of the Spirit of the Comus : 

" Mortals, that would follow me, 
Love Virtue ; she alone is free : 
She can teach ye how to climb 
Higher than the sphery chime ; 
Or if Virtue feeble were, 
Heaven itself would stoop to her." 




WHILST Charles was occupied in establishing his authority at 
home, events on the Continent had taken a turn which de- 
manded his serious attention. The death of Gustavus had left 
Germany in greater confusion than ever; and when, on April 13, 
i6 1633, the League of Heilbronn was signed by the 

April 13. Swedish Chancellor Oxenstjerna with the four circles 
ofHeii- asue of Swabia, Franconia, and the Upper and Lower 
bronn. Rhine, the Elector of Saxony and the Northern 
circles took no part in the alliance. Such a league was too weak 
to stand alone, and would necessarily fall into dependence 
upon any power by which the help so much needed should be 

That power could hardly fail to be France. Richelieu's 

ends, as no man had known better than Gustavus, were indeed 

far from being identical with the objects which a 

French* 5 patriotic German would desire ; but he offered 

nce ' promptly to contribute a large sum of money for the 

purposes of the league, and in accepting France as a paymaster, 

it was necessary to accept her counsels as well. It is true that 

, the princes who met at Heilbronn would gladly have 

1 he Duke of 

simmem balanced the influence of France by the influence 
tededu of England. They assured A nstruther that they were 
tor'oflhe" 1 " disposed to do all that Charles could reasonably 
Palatinate. Desire about the Palatinate. As Frederick's eldest 
son Charles Lewis was still a boy, they acknowledged his uncle 


the Duke of Simmern as Administrator of the Palatinate, 
whilst the Swedes, in return for a small sum of money, 
engaged to make over to him the strong places which they 
held in that territory. Charles grumblingly paid the money, 
May. gave some cheap advice about the wisdom of con- 
negieas the c i^ at i n g tne Electors of Saxony and Brandenburg, 
League. a nd turned a deaf ear to Anstruther's pressing repre- 
sentations that he must do more than this if he hoped to have 
any weight in Germany. 1 

Charles, in short, was as undecided as ever as to the means 
by which his object was to be effected. At the time when his 
ambassador was negotiating at Heilbronn, he had not yet re- 
jected the proposal of the King of Spain to mediate with the 
Emperor. Necolalde's comment on his hesitation 

May 31. 

NecoiaHes was as just as it was incisive. "The truth is," he 
said to Windebank, " you pull down as fast with one 
hand as you build up with the other, and my treaty with the 
Emperor, and Sir Robert Anstruther's negotiating with the 
Protestant Princes, the Swedes, and the French in Germany, 
are diametrically opposite. What appearance can there be of 
success when you fix upon nothing, but hold a course of neu- 
trality, and, seeking to please both, you are sure of neither ? " 2 
Charles had already hit upon a plan which would, as he 
hoped, benefit his nephew without compromising himself. As 
May 23. he was on his journey to Scotland, his sister's agent, 
knce n p e ro" Nethersole, applied to him for leave to raise a volun- 
posed. tary contribution for the recovery of the Palatinate. 
Charles, without much thought of the consequences, consented; 
and Nethersole, hurrying back to London, persuaded two mer- 
chants to advance 31,0007. on the security of the expected 
contributions, and in reliance upon an engagement which he 
offered in the name of the wealthy Lord Craven, Elizabeth's 
most enthusiastic champion. Before the legal documents 
which would authorise the levy of the money were completed, 
the secret oozed out. Nethersole, finding that all London was 

1 Anstruther to Coke, April 6, 26, S. P. Germany ; Coke to Anstru- 
ther, May 22, S, P. Holland. 

2 Windebank to Portland, May 31, S. P. Dom. ccxxxix. 71. 


talking of the scheme, and that Lord Craven was hanging back, 
became terrified lest the friends of Spain should throw obstacles 
in the way of its realisation. One of those to whom his project 

had been imparted was Goring, and upon Goring he 
qnaml whfa laid the blame of betraying his confidence. Goring, 

who was perfectly innocent, defended himself warmly, 
and complained to the Council. The Queen, in whose house- 
hold Goring was, took his part, whilst Nethersole, instead of 
speaking plainly, dropped mysterious hints of the injury which 
would be done to the King if he told all he knew. By this 
time Charles had been persuaded by Portland that it was 
unwise to offer in an underhand way the succour which he was 
not prepared to give openly. He, therefore, withdrew his per- 
mission for the contribution, and compelled Nethersole to make 
a formal apology to Goring. 1 

The result of the negotiations which were still proceeding 
in the Netherlands was of far more immediate importance to 
January. England than the result of the negotiations at Heil- 
tkm irffh" 3 bronn. Before the end of January, 1633, it had become 
Netherlands. pi a j n that if Spain was to be deferred to there was no 
likelihood of either peace or truce. The terms which had been 
admitted in 1609 were taken as a basis of negotiation ; but the 
Dutch asked for express permission to trade in all the dominions 
of the Spanish monarchy. The Spaniards replied by demanding 
the restitution of Pernambuco, which had recently been taken 
by the Dutch, and which gave to the revolted Netherlanders a 
firm footing in South America. 2 

Under these circumstances the Brussels Estates, or those 
who professed to act in their name, secretly informed the Dutch 

ministers that they were at last ready to accept the 
Propped 2 '* proposal to which they had so long turned a deaf 
revolution. ear If the p rjnce of Orange would come to their 

aid, they would throw off the Spanish yoke. If all the Flemish 
and Walloon troops were on his side, he would have no diffi- 
culty in making himself master of the six thousand Spaniards 

1 Numerous papers relating to this affair are scattered over S. P. Dom, 

2 Henrard, Marie de Medicis dans les Pays Bas, 344, 


and Italians who remained. Those who had opened the nego- 
tiation proceeded to stipulate for the rights of their fellow- 
countrymen as free and allied States, and especially demanded 
support against the aggressive designs of France. At the same 
time they applied to the English Government for aid in the 
maintenance of their independence against the Dutch, if their 
new allies should attempt to convert the protection offered into 
an enforced subjection. 1 

Though Charles could not turn away his eyes from a pro- 
posal so completely in accordance with English interests, as 
well as with the real interests of the populations concerned, it 
was not in his nature to strike boldly for the prize offered to 
him. He disliked the Dutch too much to communicate frankly 
to them the terms proposed ; whilst he had not scrupulousness 
enough to abstain altogether from interference. Gerbier was 
summoned home to lay the whole state of the case before the 
King and his ministers. When he returned to Brus- 
Charies's sels in May he carried with him instructions which 
showed that Charles wished to set up an independent 
Belgian State in opposition to the Dutch, rather than to a;m at 
limiting their encroachments whilst acting in general co-operation 
with them. " Albeit," wrote the King to him, " you are to do 
nothing in his Majesty's name to withdraw the subjects of the 
King of Spain from their natural obedience, nor to violate the 
treaties betwixt the two crowns ; yet, in case their king shall 
give them so little defence that they be forced either to fall into 
the subjection of their neighbours, or, for support of their re- 
ligion, lives, and liberties, to declare themselves free States ; in 
that case, if they desire his Majesty's assistance and protection, 
you may assure them in his name that upon such declaration to 
him by a public minister having power to give fit conditions 
for safe landing, quarter, and retreat, he will presently send 
them sufficient forces for their defence, and will protect them in 
their government, liberties, and religion, and be a means not 
only to maintain their trade against all men, none excepted, but 
much increase it." 2 

1 Gerbier to the King, M A ar< * 3 , S. P. Flanders. 

April 9 ' 
* Gerbier's instructions, May 10, ibid. 


Charles's plan ended in nothing. It would probably have 
come to nothing in any case. The populationc of the Spanish 
They end in Netherlands were too distrustful of their neighbours 
nothing. both to the north and south to make it easy to effect 
a revolution which needed the aid of those neighbours, and 
Charles had neither the strength nor the character to inspire 
confidence in his protection. The Prince of Orange took the 
field, and captured Rhinberg, as well as two important posts in 
Flanders; but not a single Netherlander from the obedient 
Provinces lifted a finger to aid him. 

Charles probably believed to the end of his life that his 
secret negotiation with the revolutionary nobles had remained 

j u iy p a secret. It was not so. Of all his envoys he had 
Strayed by trusted none like Gerbier. This man had been his 
Gerbier. special favourite because he had been a favourite with 
Buckingham. He had been allowed to accept orders directly 
from the King, and these orders were sometimes in contradiction 
with those which reached him through a Secretary of State. 
Gerbier, however, had no real tie to the English people or to 
the English king, and being very needy, and having many 
children to support, he resolved to betray his employer. 

Before the end of July he intimated to the Infanta that he 
had secrets of the utmost importance to reveal. For these he 
expected 20,000 crowns. There was some haggling over the 
price, and it was not till November that two friars 
appeared by night at the house of the English minis- 
ter, staggering under the load of coined metal which they carried. 
Gerbier had stipulated beforehand that he would have nothing' 
to say to paper money of any kind. To one of these friars he 
told the whole story, implicated Charles in the conspiracy, and 
named the Flemings and Brabanters who had taken part in it. 1 

The Infanta Isabella was overjoyed at the discovery. Much 

had been suspected before, but nothing had been absolutely 

NOV. 22. proved. She herself, however, did not live to take 

Death of the action in consequence of these revelations. She 

Infanta * 

Isabella. died on November 22. The King's brother, the 

Cardinal Infant Ferdinand, was her destined successor. -Till 

1 Henrard, 439. 


he could arrive authority fell into the hands of the Council, 
mainly composed of Spaniards, of whom the Marquis of Aytona 
was the leading personage. Aytona acted with firmness and 
December, prudence. The chief conspirators were seized, and 
The revoiu- the States-General dissolved. 'The Northern States 


seized. broke off the negotiation as soon as they found that 
they had once more to treat with Spain. The Southern Pro- 
vinces were bound for eighty years longer as slaves in the train 
of the Spanish monarchy. 

The Belgian provinces had made their choice long ago, and 
they could not break loose now from the entanglements into 
which they had fallen by the remissness of their resistance 
to Spain in the sixteenth century. They must bear whatever 
their neighbours, in guarding themselves against the revival of 
Spanish domination, might find it necessary to inflict upon 
them. Though weakened by a series of adverse campaigns, and 
by the internal misgovernment from which those adverse cam- 
paigns had resulted, the Spanish monarchy was still formidable. 
If a few years of peace gave it the opportunity of recruiting its 
strength, its enemies would have to renew the old struggle on 
more unequal terms. The presence of a Spanish army in the 
Netherlands was a standing menace to France and to the 
States- General, and it can cause no surprise that both France 
and the States were resolved to do all that in them lay to 
relieve themselves from the danger. 

It was hardly possible that the question should be regarded 
in England from quite the same point of view. Even Roe, who 
advocated a close alliance with the Dutch, was aware of the 
danger of allowing Dunkirk to fall into French hands. For 
the present, however, Dunkirk was in safety. The forces of 
France were turned in another direction. In August the Duke 
of Lorraine had given assistance to the Imperialists in his 
neighbourhood. In September Richelieu entered his 
The French duchy and brought his whole territory under subjec- 
m Alsace. ^ Q ^ R atner t h an su bmit to the indignity the Duke 
went forth as an exile, carrying his sword to the service of the 
Emperor. From Lorraine the French army passed into Alsace. 
One town after another admitted a French garrison, and it was 


only in the south of the province that the Duke of Feria still 
held his own with a Spanish force. 

The struggle for Alsace was no mere contention for a single 
province. The valley of the Rhine was the pathway of the 
November Spaniards through Italy to the Netherlands. If the 
The struggle French could hold that valley whilst Southern Ger- 
many was still in the hands of the League of Heil- 
bronn, it would be impossible for Spanish reinforcements to 
reach Brussels except by sea. Everything seemed to bode 
well for Richelieu's plans. There was dissension between 
Wallenstein and the Spanish commanders. Wallenstein asked 
for a peace from which he hoped incidentally to acquire 
large territories for himself, and, with this object in view, he 
was ready to consent to the complete abandonment of the 
Edict of Restitution. To gain his ends he betrayed the trust 
with which he had been invested by the Emperor, by entering 
into secret negotiations with his master's enemies the Swedes 
and the French. He did not, however, inspire confidence 
enough to obtain a favourable hearing from anyone. In 
November, whilst these negotiations were being carried on, 
Capture of Bernhard of Weimar, who had succeeded to the 
Racisbon. military position of Gustavus, swooped down upon 
Ratisbon. The city fell into his hands, and Wallenstein could 
do nothing to expel him. 

With the prospect that the Rhine valley might pass com- 
pletely into French possession, the maintenance of Dunkirk by 
importance Spain acquired increased importance. By that gate 
of Dunkirk. men an( j niunitions had flowed into the Spanish 
Netherlands under Charles's protection. Soon it might be the 
only gate by which the Spaniards could reach the Netherlands 
at all. 

No wonder France and Spain were anxious to gain the 
alliance of England. Charles still saw in his neighbours' diffi- 
culties an excellent opportunity for regaining the Palatinate 
Charles without fighting for it. Up to the end of October, 
France and though evidently intending to give no aid to France, 
Spam. h e had been inclined to look to France rather 
than to Spain for the assistance which he himself wanted. At 


that time there seemed little prospect that Spain would again 
be in a position to dispose of the Palatinate in one way or the 
other. Charles even listened with a favourable ear to a scheme 
proposed by the Duke of Simmern for sending the young 
Charles Lewis at the head of an army to take possession of 
his dominions. 1 

In November came a change. Necolalde talked loudly of 
Feria's successful resistance in Alsace, and assured Charles 
Overtures of that if he would send his nephew to join the Em- 
Necoiaide. p eror instead of sending'him to join the Swedes, he 
would contribute greatly to the general repose, and would for- 
ward his own interests at the same time. Charles appointed the 
three men who were most in favour of the Spanish alliance 
Portland, Cottington, and Windebank to treat with Necolalde 
in secret. 

The three who formed this secret committee had already 
been in close conference with the Spanish minister. An Eng- 
The FUWng ^'sh fishing company had been formed of which 
Company. Portland and his Roman Catholic friends were the 
principal shareholders, and so weak was Charles at sea that he 
had proposed to Necolalde that Spanish ships should be sent 
to protect the fishery against molestation by the Dutch, who 
had hitherto, through the supineness of the English, enjoyed a 
monopoly of that lucrative employment. 

The prospect of an alliance with Spain for the recovery 
diaries ^ t ^ ie P a ^ atmate an d the substitution of an Eng- 
offerstosend lish for a. Dutch fishing trade had great allurements 
to^ofrfthe* for Charles. He signified to Necolalde his readi- 

Spamards. negg to gen( j ^ ne ph ew to j o j n F er j a . His Only 

doubt was whether his nephew would be inclined to go. 2 

Charles might well doubt whether his sister would involve 

1 Coke to Boswell, Oct. 8, 5. P. Holland. 

- Necolalde to Philip IV., g^' g^. Nov. -1 Necolalde to the 

Cardinal Infant, ^ ov- " Brussels MSS. Necolalde's Memoir, Clar. S. P. 
Dec. 2 ' 

i. 77. Brasser to the States-General, Nov. ^-^. Add. MSS. 17,677 O, 
fol. 142, 143. 


herself in these never-ending combinations which took so little 

_ , account of the forces and aims of the world. Eliza- 

Elizabeth beth was indeed of one mind with him in regarding 
Richelieu with distrust. The French were approach- 
ing the Rhine, and it was known that the Elector of Treves, 
who had lately installed them in Ehrenbreitstein, was ready 
to instal them in Udenheim, a fortress to which he had lately 
given the name of Philippsburg, and which was close to the 
frontier of the Palatinate. Her secretary wrote, by her instruc- 
tions, to Nethersole, urging him in the strongest terms to demand 
immediate help from England. " If the Palatinate House," he 
nsked, " for want of assistance, were constrained, as some of 
their neighbours have been, to put themselves under the pro- 
tection of France, who could blame them ? " 

When this letter reached Nethersole it was accompanied by 
a rumour, which afterwards proved unfounded, that Philipps- 

1634. burg was actually in the hands of the French. Hoping 

^jan. 4 . that now at ] eas t the King would act, he sent to Coke 

offends" ' an extract from the secretary's letter, begging him to 

res ' request a speedy answer, lest his mistress, in her 
anxiety to look to her brother alone for help, ' should thereby 
come to be hereafter blamed by the friends of that House with 
which she was married, to have been the second time the ruin 
thereof, there being a great deal of odds between the said House's 
putting itself, or being taken into the protection of France.' 

Charles was stung by the suggestion that the Palatinate 
which had once been lost by dependence on his father might 

Jan. 5. now again be lost by dependence on himself. He 
Nethersoie's a t once ordered Nethersole into confinement. Ne- 

imprison- 111 i rr i_ i 

mem. thersole added to his offence by slipping away before 

the order was executed, with the intention of placing his papers 
in safe custody. Failing in his attempt, he was captured and 
sent to the Tower. There he remained for some time, only to 
be set at liberty after Elizabeth, at her brother's imperative re- 
quest, had dismissed him entirely from her service. His public 
career ended in this moment of impatient zeal. 1 

1 Nethersole to Coke, Jan. 4. Statement by Nethersole, Jan. 9, S. P. 
Dim. cclviii. 1338 


Coke was now directed to forbid the employment of the 
young Elector in the Palatinate It was but a dream, he wrote, 
' to imagine that a young Prince with a little army ' 
The young could ' now determine that cause for which King 
togo'to'the James of happy memory and his Majesty have striven 
Palatinate. go man y years, have engaged themselves in great 
wars, have spent millions, and in which the King was still em- 
ploying his counsels and endeavours by stopping enemies and 
raising friends, and by preparing all fit means to accommodate 
so great a work.' ' 

The means which Charles considered to be fitting were 

Jan. 21. traced out in fresh consultations between the three 

Consuita- ministers and Necolalde. On the English side all 

tions with 

Necolalde. that was at first offered was to lend twenty or thirty 

vessels to the King of Spain upon hire, and to contribute good 

offices for a general peace. In return for this shadowy 

Jan. 30. ass i s tance, Charles expected a declaration from the 
Emperor that his nephew was not affected by the ban under 
which Frederick had been placed, as well as the immediate re- 
stitution of the Lower Palatinate, and some arrangement for 
the ultimate recovery of the Upper Palatinate and the electoral 

Feb. 16. dignity. His view of the relations into which he 
Charles's proposed to enter with Spain was more distinctly 

offers to l ' * 

Spain. set down in a despatch to Hopton, the English 
Resident at Madrid. " In the meantime," wrote Windebank 
of the Spaniards, " their affairs in Flanders growing every day 
into more desperate estate, and his Majesty considering in his 
princely wisdom how much it concerns him in his own interest 
to carry a jealous and watchful eye over the growing greatness- 
of the States, by whose insolencies he is every day much 
awakened, has been pleased to direct the Lord Treasurer lo- 
cal! the Lord Cottington and myself unto him, and to confer 
with Necolalde upon some course to be held for giving assist- 
ance to the King of Spain, such as may stop the current of 
the Hollanders' conquests, and peradventure draw them to a 
peace, yet not plunge his Majesty into a sudden, dangerous, 

1 Coke to Boswell, Jan. 7, S. P. Holland. 


and untimely war with those people. To do this, it is of both 
sides thought fit that his Majesty should put a strong and 
powerful fleet to sea, that may open the ports, prohibit all kinds 
of depredation in those seas, and secure even the coasts of 
Flanders ; and this to be done upon pretence of suppressing 
and punishing the great liberty which hath of late been iaken 
both by the States and those of Dunkirk, to commit hostilities 
one upon another, even within his Majesty's safest harbours, 
both in England and Ireland. But howsoever his Majesty's 
own reason of State, as I have said, doth chiefly move him to 
this course, yet is it so carried as the motion grows from Necol- 
alde ; unto whom it is represented that his Majesty is now at 
peace with all the world, that he shall hereby hazard a danger- 
ous war with his neighbours, or at least enter into a great and 
insupportable charge ; and therefore it will be necessary for the 
King of Spain to furnish money toward it ; which doubtless he 
could no way spend more to his advantage, as the case now 
stands." l 

Such an exposition of Charles's intentions needs no comment. 

There was something to be said in favour of Roe's policy of a 

strict alliance with the Dutch, and of looking for a 

Charles's guarantee for the special interests of England in the 

nes ' good feeling aroused by a warm co-operation with 
the States-General, and in the necessity which they would one 
day or another be under of seeking English aid against the 
overweening pretensions of France. Something too was to be 
said in favour of the policy which was advocated by Wentworth 
of withdrawing altogether from the political complications of 
the Continent, except so far as interference was demanded by 
the special interests of England. The schemes of Charles, on 
the other hand, were so complicated and unreal, that they only 
serve to make the brain dizzy. Everything was to be gained 
upon which he had set his heart, yet nothing was to be actually 
done to obtain his objects. It would be enough to seem to do 

1 Answer to Necolalde, Jan. 30 ; Windebank to Hopton, Feb. 16, 
C!ar. S. P. i. 79, 74. Necolalde to Philip IV., Jan. ^, Simatuas MSS. 


everything in order that he might impose upon friend and 
enemy alike. If he was unaware that the secret of his offers to 
the Low Country revolutionists in the preceding year was in 
the hands of Olivares, at least he might have taken a lesson by 
the utter failure of those expectations which his diplomacy had 
raised in the Netherlands, and have abstained from entering on 
a similar course in Germany. 

If a warning of the inevitable result of a policy which fails 

to base itself upon the realities of the world was needed, it 

Feb. 15. might have been afforded by the sudden downfall of 

Assassina- Wallenstein. Though it would be an insult to the 

tion of Wal- 

lenstein. great strategist to compare his intellect with that of 
Charles, their mode of operation was the same. There had 
been the same readiness to intrigue with all parties, the same 
reliance upon forces which would fail in the day of trial. 
Wallenstein's treason was detected at Vienna. In vain he 
summoned the army to his support. He perished at Eger, the 
victim of an assassination which he had himself provoked. 

The removal of Wallenstein sealed the complete reconcilia- 
tion of the two branches of the House of Austria ; but it was 'a 
Renewed fatal reconciliation for the Emperor. His forces were 
between the now at tne disposition of the King of Spain, and 
of th b e r: House Germany became but the battle-ground on which 
of Austria. was to be fought out the old rivalry between Paris 
and Madrid. The Cardinal Infant had for some months been 
waiting at Milan till he could lead an army through Germany 
to Brussels. Wallenstein had refused him permission to pass. 
That obstacle was now removed. The Imperialist armies were 
placed under the command of Ferdinand, King of Hungary, 
the Emperor's eldest son, and the husband of that sister of the 
King of Spain who had once been Charles's affianced bride. 

Such a conjuncture of affairs boded no good to the fortunes 

of the German Protestants. Whilst their enemies were uniting, 

they themselves were divided. All North Germany 

German' stood aloof from South Germany and the Swedes. 

Protestants. In the army Bern h ar d wa s jealous of Horn, the 

Swedish general, and both had grievances against the civilian 
administration of Oxenstjerna. Was it likely that a Spanish 



victory, if it came, would give the Palatinate to Charles? 

Hopton, who had every opportunity of gauging the 

sentiments of the Spanish ministers, reported that 
they were certain in the end to consult the interests of Bavaria 
rather than the interests of England, as well as to do their 
best to thrust Charles further than he was inclined to go in his 
opposition to the Dutch. 1 

In the English Council nothing was known of the exact 
nature of the overtures which Charles was making to Spain, 

but the fact that he was leaning in that direction was 
na's son in well known, and the Queen's party, which as far as 

numbers went, predominated in the Council, made 
every effort to draw him from his resolution, and to urge him 
to promise help to the Heilbronn League. A son of Oxenstjerna 
had just arrived in England to beg for aid. He was outwardly 
treated by the King with respect, but an excuse was found in 
his want of a formal commission from his father for sending 
him back without the promise which he desired. Anstruther 
April 14. was ordered to attend a meeting of the members of 
to Ar"s C tru- nS t ' ie League which was about to be held at Frankfort. 
ther - He was to urge them to a general peace, and to tell 

them that if they failed to obtain it through the Emperor's 
fault, the King of England would then hear what they had to 
say about an alliance. Such instructions were naturally as un- 
satisfactory to Oxenstjerna as they were all that Necolalde could 
desire. 2 

At Madrid no extraordinary eagerness was manifested to 

March accept Charles's proposals. Olivares thought that 

Reception when the King of England had succeeded in equip- 

ov..rturet S a S t ping a fleet with Spanish money, he would make 

use of it to excite the revolutionists in the Low Coun- 
tries to try their fortunes once more. Necolalde was therefore 

1 Hopton to Wmdebank, ^^l 8 , Clar. S. P. i. 80. 

April 7 

2 Necolalde to the Cardinal Infant, March ^ ^jjj%*, Brussels MSS. 
Praft of instructions to Anstruther, April 3 ; Instructions to Anstruther, 
April 14 ; Anstruther to Coke, June 30. S. P. Germany, Necolalde to 

Philip IV., jjjj"-,- 15 , Simancas MSS. 2564. 


enjoined to be very cautious, and to try to find out what Charles 
really meant before engaging himself to anything. 1 

In London accordingly there was much diplomatic fencing. 

The English negotiators declared their master to be ready to 

A ril put to sea a powerful armament to enable him to 

Progress of repress the excesses of the Dutch, and, if need be, to 

the negotia- , r T--I j i 

tionin secure the coast of Glanders against them ; but they 


was willing to contribute. 2 At last, though no agreement was 
actually come to, the two parties arrived sufficiently at an un- 
derstanding to make Charles desirous to take a forward step in 
the preparation of an armament. 

For this purpose it would be necessary for Charles to an- 

nounce his intentions to the Privy Council. Yet how could he 

venture to inform that body of the real object which 

Opposition he had in view? A close alliance with Spain against 

to Portland. ^ j- )utc j 1 wou i(j h ave been as unpopular with the 

majority of the Council as with the nation itself. Nor was Port- 
land, the main supporter of the scheme, likely to be regarded 
with any sort of favour. Even councillors who seldom troubled 
their heads about foreign politics, and who had taken little in- 
terest in the reception of young Oxenstjerna, declaimed fiercely 
against Portland's greed of money, and his habit of postponing 
public to private interests. The attack was led by Laud and 
Coventry. They charged him with selling woods belonging to 
the Crown far below their value, in order to buy them for his 
own use in the name of a third person. Portland, who was 
suffering from the disease which put an end to his life in the 
next year, was too ill to answer the accusation, and his enemies 
imputed his absence from Court to a consciousness of guilt. 
Lennox, whose sister was Portland's daughter-in-law, alone 
took his part. We can fancy how the youth, whose gay attire 
and whose handsome face with the mild dreamy eyes are 
familiar to us on the canvas of Vandyke, and who was ever 

1 Consulta of the Council of State, March - ; Philip IV. to Necolalde, 
V * %, Simancas MSS. 2520, 2574. 

' Necolalde to Philip IV , April ^ ibid. 2520. 
A A 2 


faithful in adversity, stood up for one whom he was bound to 
honour and defend, as he had stood up for the young Lord 
Weston when Holland challenged him, and as in after days he 
was to stand up for his master when he saw him borne down 
by the weight of unequalled calamity. In his desperate straits 
he bethought him of a strange mode of gaining the favour of 
the King. He brought Buckingham's widow to Court for the 
first time since her husband's murder, to plead for the man 

whom her husband had raised to office. Charles 

was evidently touched at the recollections which the 
sight of her called up in his mind ; but he reserved his decision. 
Laud then showed the King a letter from Wentworth, who was 
now Lord Deputy of Ireland, in which he complained bitterly 
that Portland had never answered his letters, though they con- 
tained demands of the highest importance for his Majesty's 
service, and declared that under such circumstances he would 
no longer be responsible for the government of that country. 
Laud had reason to believe that he had thus produced a great 
impression on the King's mind ; but the impression soon wore 
off, and the Archbishop had the mortification of discovering 
that Portland stood still unshaken in the Royal favour. 1 

Laud knew well how hard it was to induce Charles to give 
up anyone in whom he had once placed confidence. He did 

not know the special tie which at that time united 
to t>e hood- 1 the King to the Lord Treasurer. He did not know 

that the two were fellow-conspirators in a plot to 
hoodwink the Privy Council, and through the Privy Council to 
hoodwink the nation itself. 

The primary difficulty of discovering a means of equipping 
a fleet without summoning Parliament to vote a subsidy had 

already been got over. The suggestion of a means 
of'fhip S - 10E of escaping the difficulty had come from Noy. By 

the constitutional practice of the Plantagenets, the 
port towns had been called upon to furnish ships manned and 
equipped for the defence of the realm. 2 As late as in 1626 a 
fleet had been got together in this manner ; and though some 

' Zonca's despatches, May ^ t * g ^ e 1' June 1, Venice MSS. 
* Extracts from the public records, S. P. Dom. cclxxvi. 65. 


objections had been raised by interested parties, those objec- 
tions had never gained such strength as to cause serious 
embarrassment to the Government. No doubt there was a 
difference between that which had taken place in 1626 and 
that which was now proposed. In 1626 England had been at 
war with Spain, and the provision of ships might therefore be 
regarded as part of the general obligation to defend the kingdom 
in time of war. In 1634 the country was in profound peace, 
and Charles was therefore under the necessity of showing that 
in spite of appearances the position of affairs was in some sort 
equivalent to actual war. 

By June 6 Charles had obtained an opinion from Coventry 

and Manchester that he was legally authorised to carry Noy's 

scheme into execution. 1 He determined to announce 

June o. 

Submitted his resolution to the Council on the 8th. The whole 
and Man- truth it was impossible to tell. Except the three 

ministers who had been treating with Necolalde, 
there was probably not a single member of the Council who 
would not have felt outraged by hearing that the proposed fleet 
was to take the part of Spain against the Dutch. The King's 
naval preparations must be made to look as if they were simply 
intended as a defensive measure against all assailants alike. 

No better instrument for this work of concealment could be 
found than Secretary Coke. His known hostility to Spain would 

give weight to words which, in his ignorance of the 
Coke" s e state- real facts, he would speak honestly and from his 

heart. Coke was accordingly directed to read before 
the Council a long exposition of the dangers of the kingdom. 
Englishmen, he said, had to submit to wrongs in every part of 
the world. They suffered as much from Turkey, Tunis, Savoy, 
and Spain as from their nearer neighbours in France and the 
Netherlands. English trade did not meet with fair play any- 
where. "There is no hope of obtaining justice," he said to the 
King, " but by doing it yourself, which requireth the puissant 
reinforcing of your guards to recover your undoubted right of 
sovereignty in all your seas." 2 

1 Windebank to Portland, June 6, C/ar. S. P. i. 94. 
* Coke's declaration, June 8, S. P. Dom, cclxix. 51. 


There was much in Coke's complaint which called for the 
most serious consideration. With commerce spreading out on 
Netessity every side, in the face of the predominant maritime 
of a fleet. force of the Dutch Republic and of the growing 
maritime force which Richelieu was creating in France, the 
time was come when England must possess a navy worthy of 
the name, or must forfeit her place amongst the nations and 
her power to protect her traders on the seas. The claim, how- 
ever, which Charles put forward was more than a claim that he 
might be able to do justice to his subjects. The assertion of 
the sovereignty of the seas meant nothing less than an assertion 
that the whole of the English Channel to the shores of France, 
and of the North Sea to the shores of Flanders and Holland, 
was as completely under the dominion of the King of England 
as Kent or Yorkshire. To fish in those waters, or even to 
navigate them without his permission, was an encroachment on 
his rights. 

. Monstrous as the claim was, it appealed too strongly to the 
English contempt of foreigners to be without an echo in English 
hearts. In the Council, at least, it found unanimous support. 

The argument by which Charles's claim to the sovereignty 
of the seas was supported, like the argument by which his claim 
to use his subjects' ships was supported, was historical and legal, 
sir John Some six or eight months before, 1 Sir John Borough, 
.vm% the Keeper of the Records in the Tower, had drawn 
o/ the Sea. U p an elaborate argument, showing how in the days 
,vhen England was strong her sovereigns had put forth extrava- 
gant claims, and how those extravagant claims had sometimes 
been acquiesced in by foreign nations, and ending by a trium- 
phant vindication of that authority as an inherent right of the 
Crown. 2 It was Charles's misfortune never to know that obsolete 
precedents would go but a little way to bolster up an authority 

1 A MS. copy of Sir J. Borough's book (Harl. MSS. 4314) has the 
date of 1633, and there is internal evidence to the same effect. This means 
before March 25, 1634. It would hardly be begun before the King's re- 
turn from Scotland in August, and probably not till December or January. 

2 The claim is to be found in an order of the Admiralty Commissioners 
as early as Jan. 21, 1634, S. P. Dom. cclix. 17. 


which was repelled by the feelings of the existing generation. 
He flung a defiance in the face of all other nations, when, unless 
urgent necessity arose, he should have contented himself with 
the defence of his own realms from unwarranted attacks. 

The first result of Coke's statement to the Council was the 
appointment of a committee to consult with Noy on the mode 

of carrying his suggestion into execution. Noy did 
ofconsldera* not live to see his counsels followed. Though his 

own proposal departed very little from the ancient 
custom of the realm, his ' new writs of an old edition,' as Roe 
called them, have handed down his name to a notoriety which 
Aug. 10 more distinguished men have failed to reach. A dry 
Noy s death, technical lawyer, of strong and- Puritan, tendencies, 
he had no grasp of constitutional principle to enable him to 
understand the mischief which he was doing. 

The death of Noy was quickly followed by the death of the 
far greater lawyer who, violent and intemperate as he was, had 

striven hard in the later years of his life to erect a 

Sept 3. 

Death of Sir barrier against absolute government by the help of 
those very technicalities of the law which Noy was 
twisting in the opposite direction. Sir Edward Coke had taken 
no part in the session of 1629, and had lived in retirement at 
Stoke Fogeys ever since he had raised his voice against Bucking- 
ham in the last days of the preceding session. In the solitude of 
his country house he was still a cause of anxiety to the Govern- 
ment, and upon a rumour of his ill-health in 1 631, Charles issued 
orders that in the event of his death all his papers should be 
seized, lest some of them which might be directed against the ex- 
isting system should come into circulation with the authority of 
his name. l The old man, however, lingered more than 
' three years longer, and it was not till July 1634 that 
Windebank received orders to rifle his house. 2 No immediate 

1 Mr. Bruce is mistaken in saying in the preface to the Calendar of 
1634-5, xvii. that Charles ordered the papers to be destroyed. The word 
is 'suppressed.' Holland to Dorchester, Jan. 24, 1631, S. P. Dom. 
clxxxiii. 1 8. 

2 The King to Windebank, July 26, ibid, cclxxii. 62. 


attempt, however, seems to have been made to carry out these 
directions. In August Coke's study in the Temple was 
sealed up, but it was not till he was known to be ac- 
tually dying or dead that the order of July was put into execution 
at Stoke Fogeys. One of his sons, Roger Coke, a 

September. , . . . , . 

The papers man too mendacious or inaccurate to give any weight 
of authority to the story which he told, declared 
long afterwards that Windebank himself ransacked the house 
while the aged lawyer was lying on his death-bed. 1 Though 
this statement is probably untrue, it is certain that within a 
week after his death a trunk full of papers was brought to 
Whitehall and opened in Charles's presence. Three months 
afterwards a fresh seizure was made at the Temple, and though 
strict orders were given to restore all documents relating to 
Coke's private affairs, and his family doubtless recovered with 
them the jewellery, the old coins, and the 'paper of precepts 
to his children,' 2 which were in the trunk which Charles 
opened, there was much which they afterwards claimed as 
having been wrongfully kept back. Even of those papers which 
were undeniably of a public nature, there were many the de- 
tention of which could only be accounted for by a desire to 
suppress the publication of legal opinions unpalatable to the 
Government. Coke, it was true, had been a Commissioner of 
the Treasury, and papers relating to the working of the Treasury 
were as legitimately an object of solicitude to the King as the 
papers which he was rightfully accustomed to seize upon the 
death of a Secretary of State : but the documents on which 
Charles laid his hand were legal as well as financial, and he 
was much more interested in stopping the circulation of Coke's 
views on law than he was in the perusal of a stray series of 

1 Coke's Detection, 253. He also says that Coke's will was carried off. 
There is no mention of it in the list of papers preserved. As the trunk 
was broken open before the King on Sept. 9, the probability is that it was 
seized after, not before, Coke's death on the 3rd. 

2 List of papers in the trunk, Lambeth MSS. 943, fol. 369. The 
original ir. as given above. I am sorry to have to dispel Mr. Bruce's little 
romance. He read it a ' paper of poetry.'' The list of the papers seized in 
December is 6". P. Dom. cclxxviii. 35. 


In one respect the judges of Charles's reign trod in the 
footsteps of Coke. As far as the administration of justice be- 
Charles's tween man and man was concerned they stand in no 
judges. need of defence. There were no takers of bribes 
amongst them. They were never charged with incapacity or 
negligence. In another respect they refused to follow Coke. 
They never ventured to regard themselves as arbiters between 
the Crown and the nation. They accepted in the fullest sense 
the position of defenders of the prerogative. It was their 
delight to ratify the legal technicalities which men like Noy 
drew from the stores of the past, and they were well pleased 
that the Government should go its own way if only it flattered 
them by referring the legality of its action to the metewand of 
their learning. 

Of all the judges, there was only one who had shown any 

political qualities. Sir Robert Heath, Chief Justice of the 

Sept. 14. Common Pleas, joined to a zeal for the maintenance 

Pi?" 1 ,'?* 1 . of of the prerogative a devotion to the person of the 

Chief Justice i o r 

Heath. King which in a later age would justly be denomi- 
nated servile ; but he had a love of compromise and modera- 
tion which seems to have given offence in high quarters. Above 
all, he had shown in various ways that his sympathies were not 
with the ecclesiastical government of Laud. 

Suddenly, without a note of warning, Heath was dismissed 
from the Bench. No reason was assigned for the unexpected 
blow, and the special grant of professional precedence which 
was accorded to him after his dismissal excludes the supposition 
that he had committed any actual offence. 1 It may be that, as 
some thought, his ecclesiastical tendencies were obnoxious to 
the archbishop. It is more probable, though not a word of 
evidence exists, that Charles had reason to think that he was 
not sound on the question of ship-money. However that may 
have been, it was impossible for the King to take a more direct 

1 In a short autobiographical memoir, apparently written without any 
view to publication, which has been printed by the Philobiblon Society 
( Bibliographical a nd Historical Miscellanies, vol. i.), Heath says, "I was 
on a sudden discharged of that place of Chief Justice, no cause being then 
nor at any time since showed for my icmoval." 


way of establishing in the eyes of all men the utter worthless- 
ness of that appeal to the judges which he was always ready to 
make, and which was no doubt equivalent, in his. eyes, to an 
appeal to the law itself. 

Heath's successor, Sir John Finch, was a man not likely to 

be troubled with scruples. The Speaker who had once been 

held down in the chair by violence had come to look 

Oct. ID. J 

Succeeded upon popular influence or control with a bitter detes- 
tation. His own character was such as to give offence 
in any situation. He was arrogant and careless of the rights 
of others, insolent in prosperity and without dignity in mis- 

In such a man Charles would possess a useful tool. Finch 
had lately drawn attention to his serviceableness by the part 
June. which he had taken in an affair in which, even more 
irMh pn F tices * nan in th a t of ship-money, the prevailing disposition 
of Dean. of the Government to cultivate external legality at 
the expense of justice was conspicuous. It is probable that 
the charges which had been brought in May against Portland 
of malpractices in the sale of woods had instigated his oppo- 
nents at Court to investigate the proceedings of his clients in 
the Poorest of Dean. His secretary Gibbons had there taken 
possession of a large tract of land, as was alleged, under false 
pretences ; and Sir Basil Brooke, one of the Lord Treasurer's 
Roman Catholic friends, was charged with cutting down trees 
set apart for the navy, for use in his own iron-works. This 
abuse, it was further said, had been authorised by Portland 
without the King's knowledge. 1 

Such a tale was indeed welcome to Portland's enemies. 

As it happened, his chief opponent, the Earl of Holland, was 

July 12. Chief Justice in Eyre, and was thus officially em- 

Hoiiand's powered to investigate all malpractices in the admin- 

justsce-sent * ' 

in the Forest, istration of the forests. In setting out to hold a justice- 
seat, as his judicial visitation was termed, at Gloucester, for 
the Forest of Dean, he was eager, as contemporaries believed, 
to find a new blot on the tables of his adversary. 2 He may 

1 Jones's Reports, 347. Z<. nca's despatch, Aug. , i'enice MSS, 

9 This is distinctly stated by Zonca. 

1 634 THE FORES 'T COURTS. 3^3 

have had another object in view, and have been anxious to show 
to Charles that the Lord Treasurer's rivals were as zealous to 
uphold the prerogative as the Lord Treasurer himself ; though, 
it may be added, he would thus leave no doubt in the minds of 
others that it would be as unsafe to leave the rightful claims of 
the subject in his hands as in the hands of Portland. It is not 
unlikely that the idea which he intended to realise originated 
in the mind of Noy, who was already too ill to take an active 
part in the business. Finch was, therefore, deputed to act as 
his substitute in enforcing the claim which the Attorney-General 
had conceived. 

This claim was nothing short of monstrous. For more than 
three hundred years the boundaries of the forests in the whole 
claim to an f England had been fixed in accordance with the 
thelbrest f P eram bulation made after the great confirmation of 
boundaries, the Charters by which Edward I. had consented 
after a hard struggle to limit his powers for the benefit of the 
nation. Finch now asked, on behalf of the Crown, that this 
perambulation should be declared invalid, 1 and in this conten- 
tion he was supported by the three judges who had come down 
to act as legal accessors to Holland. The grand jury 2 reason- 
ably urged that it was hard to disturb a settlement of three 
centuries ; but the legal question was not one which came 
within their sphere, and it was impossible to deny that the dry 
facts of the case were as they had been represented to them. 
A verdict was therefore of necessity given for the Crown. No 
fewer than seventeen villages had sprung up on the land claimed 
for the forest, and the sudden transference from the common 
law to the forest law was no slight misfortune. Special restric- 
tions would be placed upon every action which might be in 
any way prejudicial to the preservation of deer, the very exist- 
ence of which upon the lands of these unlucky townsmen and 

1 On the ground that this perambulation had disforested land newly 
attached to the forest in the reign of Henry II. which it was beyond its 
power to touch. 

2 The grand jury must not be confounded with the Verderers, &c., 
who attended the Court. It was no doubt composed of the neighbouring 


farmers was purely imaginary, and these restrictions would 
be vindicated against them not in the ordinary courts, but before 
a special Forest Court gathered under the influence of persons 
occupying situations in the forest and interested by every pos- 
sible motive in maintaining the King's rights, however obso- 
lete they might be. Unless Charles could be induced to miti- 
gate in practice the cruelty of this sentence, a gross injustice 
would be committed. 

Portland's dependents met with as little favour as the men 

of Gloucestershire. Sir Basil Brooke and his partner Mynn were 

July 14. fined i2,ooo/. on the ground that their authorisation 

Fines on proceeded from the Treasury, not from the King. No 

Gibbons and * " 

hrooke. less a fine than 35,0007. is said to have been imposed 
upon Gibbons, 1 in whose grant a technical informality was dis- 
covered, and orders were also given for his prosecution in the 
Star Chamber. 2 The fines on Brooke and Mynn were raised 
by subsequent inquiry to no less than 98,0007. Fines of such 
magnitude were not intended to be levied. Two years after- 
wards Brooke and Mynn were pardoned, on payment of I2,ooo7. 
and the surrender of the iron-works. 3 For the present the 
main question of interest at Court was whether the Treasurer 
August. could be implicated in his secretary's delinquencies. 
Attempt to Portland defended himself stoutly. He dismissed 

implicate . 

Portland. Gibbons from his service, and professed entire ignor- 
ance of all that had passed. The King accepted his explanations, 
but there were not wanting those who expressed their pity for 
the servant who had been sacrificed, as they said, to save the 
credit of his master. 4 

If Charles was resolved to listen to nothing against Portland, 
he was highly satisfied with Holland's work in the Forest of 

1 The latter sum rests on Zonca's statement that the fines on the two 
together reached 47,ooo/. Zonca's despatch, Aug. ~, Venice MSS. 

2 Pardon to Brooke and Mynn, July 22, 1636. Pat. 13, Charles I. 
Part 4. See Jones' 1 ! Reports^ 347. 

3 Breviates of the Exchequer, 1636-7. 

Correr's despatch, ct - **< O ct - 3* 
Nov. 3, Nov. 10 


Dean. All other forests were to be dealt with in the same way. 

Oct. i. Waltham Forest, of which the Epping Forest of the 

J u j c f"u eat present day forms a part, was the next to be visited. 

in Waltham ' * 

Forest. On October i Holland came down to hold his 

justice-seat in Essex. The next day Finch produced an old 

Oct. 2. record of Edward I. upon which he based a claim 

Enormous to an enormous extension of the forest, saying that ' he 

claims of J 

Finch. would know how his master had lost every inch of it.' 
He ' would not stir from thence till he had a verdict for the 
King.' The Earl of Warwick, Holland's brother, who was a 
large proprietor in the county, rose to demand time to. answer 
him. He doubted not, he said, that he could give such satis- 
faction to the Court as to enable the landowners of Essex to 
continue in the enjoyment of the possessions of their ancestors 
' which had been out of the forest for three hundred and thirty 
years.' Finch replied that he would only give him time till the 
next morning. 

The next morning Finch again produced his records, fell 

into a rage with the jury, and swore that he would have a ver- 

Oct. 3 . diet for the King ere he stirred a foot. Some of the 

Finch jurymen asked to be allowed to see the records. 

threatens * 

the jury, Finch told them they should not see a word. They 
must be satisfied with what he had read to them already. Un- 
and obtains der this pressure a verdict was returned in accord- 
a verdict. ance w j t ] 1 t ^ e utmost demand made on the part of 
the Crown ; but Holland, influenced perhaps by his brother's 
presence, refused to accept the verdict as conclusive. He 
adjourned the court for some months, and promised to do the 
aggrieved persons ' all the right he might.' l 

To raise such a man as Finch to the Bench was to provide 
that the King's wishes should in every case be carried out 
under the veil of legal forms. Against the subject some arrow 
Legal cha- out of the quiver of obsolete precedents was always 
Charleys to be found ; some reason was always at hand to 
absolutism, prove that precedents were inapplicable when they 
made against the King. Charles's encroachments upon the 
1 Statement by Warwick, Oct. 5, S. P. Dom. cclxxv. 21. Printed in 
full in Mr. Bruce's Introduction to the Calendar of 1634-35. 


rights and liberties of his subjects were made in the most in- 
sidious form possible, for they were made under the cloak of 
the law and under the sanction of those who should have been 
its guardians. 

It is only fair to acknowledge that men whose character 
stands higher than that of Finch, gave their support to this evil 
Legal pro- system. Sir John Bankes, who followed Noy as 
motions. Attorney-General, was an honest and respectable 
lawyer ; and Lyttelton, who replaced the inefficient Shilton as 
Solicitor-General, had been one of the supporters of the Petition 
df Right, and was a man equally respected for his legal know- 
ledge and for the uprightness of his character. The truth seems 
to be that the lawyers were most inclined of all classes of 
Englishmen to recognise the advantage of the observation of 
legal forms, and the least ready to notice the hardships inflicted 
under cover of those forms. . There was something flattering to 
their pride in being outwardly regarded as the main pillars of 
the throne, and they did not care to ask themselves whether 
the reality corresponded with the appearance. At a later period 
the lawyers were thrown into opposition by jealousy of the 
increasing power of the clergy. 

Like the forest claims the proposed demand for ship-money 
was either technically according to law, or could easily be 
July. argued to be so. Coventry and Manchester, who 
n'iueeTn" wcre DUS ^y employed in giving to the new impost a 
ship-money, shape which would raise as little objection as possible, 
were, however, left in complete ignorance of the consultations 
which Portland, Cottington, and Windebank were carrying on 
,, . with Necolalde behind their backs. Charles, indeed, 

I he negotia- - ' 

tion with was more out of humour with the Dutch than ever. 
He had discovered that a secret treaty had been 
signed in April between the King of France and the States- 
General, by which Louis engaged to make a large annual pay- 
ment to the Republic towards the expenses of the war. At 
July ir. last Necolalde sent Charles a bundle of intercepted 
c^'e'd'de- despatches from the Prince of- Orange to his agents 
spatches. j n France, urging them to obtain the consent of the 
Cardinal to a joint attack upon Dunkirk. A letter from the 

1634 A SECRET TREATY. 367 

Dutch statesman Aerssens, in the same packet, pressed 
Richelieu to undertake the siege. " The capture of Dunkirk," 
he wrote, "will extend the French frontier at the only point 
where England and Spain can join hands. If that port be 
once closed, France will have nothing more to apprehend from 
their alliance. The sea will then be divided between you 
and us." 1 

Charles could not fail to feel the application of the well- 
directed lash. If he had openly declared that he meant to 

join Spain against France and the Dutch Nether- 
August. J 

Charles lands, his policy, whether commendable or not, would 
overtures of at least have been frank and intelligible. It is no 
matter of surprise that he felt little inclined to listen 
to the fresh overtures which were made to him by a new French 
ambassador, the Marquis of Pougny, who had come to invite 
him to take part in the league against Spain. 2 He told the 
Dutch ambassador, Joaqhimi, that he was at peace with Spain, 
and that he would not attack a friendly nation without a good 
reason. He did not wish to see any of the combatants in the 
existing war overpowered, and it must be acknowledged that 
the fortunes of the House of Austria were at a very low ebb 
just then. He intended to be the master of the English sea, 
and to keep the Flemish ports open to trade. 3 

Such words, however, conveyed but a small part of the 

projects which were floating in Charles's brain. Articles of a 

treaty between England and Spain were drawn up 

treaty with in concert with Necolalde, and, after being discussed 

during some weeks, were finally altered so as, to 

some extent, to suit the requirements of the Spaniards. 

The articles thus prepared were kept from the knowledge 

1 Windebank to Hopton, July n, Clar. S. P. i. 103. The letters are 
in S. P. Hol'and, and also in Aitzenia, Saken van Staet en Oorlogh, ii. 
There seems to be no doubt that they are genuine. Necolalde in his 

despatch of July speaks of them as such. Simancas MSS. 2520. 

2 Instructions to Pougny, July, Arch, des AJf. Etr. xlv. 316. 

* Joachimi to the States-General, Aug. , Add. MSS. 17,677 O, 
fol. 217. 


of all the Privy Councillors, excepting the three trusted minis 
ters. In these articles the plan of keeping open the Flemish 
ports and overthrowing the mastery of the Dutch at sea was 
The Parti- niade to lead up to a scheme still more portentous. 
tlTb^taken ^^ e partition treaty signed by Cottington and Olivares 
U P- in 1631 was once more to be brought forward and 

made the subject of negotiation. The negotiations set on foot 
were to receive their completion in the league which had been 
signed by Cottington at Madrid, the object of which was to 
attack and overwhelm the Dutch Republic, and to divide with 
the King of Spain the soil which had been bedewed with the 
blood of the victims of Alkmaar and Haarlem, and had been 
guarded by the strong arms which had broken the dykes of 
Leyden and the cunning brains which had reduced Hertogen- 
bosch and Maestricht to surrender. With this purpose in view 
the King of England was to put a fleet of twenty vessels to 
sea ; five of which were to be at the. charge of the King of 

As usual with Charles, much space was devoted to the 
elaboration of pretexts which might keep all men, including his 
own Council, in the dark concerning his real inten- 
co r vIredVor S ~ tions. " The pretext of this arming," it was distinctly 
concealing ^j^ ^al] fo e to secure the coasts of Great Britain 

and Ireland, and to free them from pirates and others 
that commit hostilities and insolencies there." As soon as the 
fleet was at sea, Charles's minister at the Hague was to demand 
from the Dutch the restitution of some Spanish prizes which 
they had taken in English waters. In the meanwhile the Eng- 
lish fishing-boats were to be protected, as well as the trade 
between England and Dunkirk. Any attempt of the Dutch to 
enforce the blockade of Dunkirk was to be resisted by the 
combined fleets of England and Spain. If the English men-of- 
war found an engagement in progress between a Dutch and a 
Spanish ship in his Majesty's seas, they were to take care that 
the Spaniards should 'receive no wrong.' The promise to 
convoy Spanish vessels with soldiers and money for Dunkirk 
was more conditional, as the King of England's consent was to 
be specially obtained on each occasion. If, however, a direct 


attempt were made to besiege Dunkirk, the English fleet was 
Payments to to come to the help of the town. The last article 
the' n King b (rf re " ate( ^ to an advance of 5o,ooo/. by the King of 
Spain. Spain, to be deducted hereafter from the monthly 

contribution which Philip was bound to make under Cotting- 
ton's partition treaty, 1 as soon as the attack upon the Dutch 
was finally resolved on. If, however, the English fleet for any 
reason did not put to sea for the purposes agreed on, Charles 
would have to repay the money. 

Such was the treaty which, on October 16, was sent to 
Madrid for the approval of the Spanish Government. 2 Much to 

Oct. i e. Charles's surprise, Necolalde had shown no inclina- 
Swiinlfbr* ^ on to f nvar d an arrangement which seemed so 
approval. favourable to his master, and had occupied many 
weeks in cavilling at various expressions which might have been 
The brought into a satisfactory form in a few hours. The 

dmi rds trut h was ^ at neither Necolalde nor Olivares had the 
Charles. slightest confidence in anything that Charles could 
say. The Spanish minister wrote home that nothing would 
come of it all, as Charles had but little courage and little 
money, 3 and Olivares cordially agreed with Necolalde. 

Four days after the despatch of the courier to Madrid, the 
ship-money writs were issued. Unlike those which followed 

Oct. 20. in the succeeding year, these first writs were directed 
The ship- on i y to tne authorities of the port towns, and of places 

money writs * 

issued. along the coast. The ostensible reason for demand- 
ing the money was set forth in the writs themselves. " We are 
given to understand," said the King to his too-credulous sub- 
jects, "that certain thieves, pirates, and robbers of the sea, as 

1 By the sixth article of that treaty Philip would have to furnish 
25,0007. a month, and it is to this that reference is made. In the first draft 
the future league to be negotiated is described as a defensive one. In the 
second draft the paitition treaty is directly referred to. I suspect that 
Charles did not fully realise to himself how far these articles were a step to 
the carrying out of the partition treaty. There were still to be negotiations, 
and he might draw back in the end. Clar. S. P. i. 109, 112, 126. 

2 Windebank to Hopton, October 1 6, Malct MSS., recently purchased 
by the British Museum. 

3 Note of Necolalde's despatch, =^~^ Simancas MSS. 2520. 


well Turks, enemies of the Christian name, as others, being 
gathered together, wickedly taking by force and spoiling the 
ships and goods and merchandises, not only of our subjects, 
but also of the subjects of our friends in the sea which hath 
been accustomed anciently to be defended by the English 
nation, and the same at their pleasure hath carried away, de- 
livering the men in the same into miserable captivity ; and 
forasmuch as we see them daily preparing all manner of 
shipping further to molest our merchants and to grieve the 
kingdom, unless remedy be not sooner applied, and their en- 
deavours be not more manly met withal ; also the dangers 
considered which in these times of war do hang over our heads, 
that it behoveth us and our subjects to hasten the defence of 
the sea and kingdom with all expedition or speed that we can ; 
we willing by the help of God chiefly to provide for the defence 
of the kingdom, safeguard of the sea, security of our subjects, 
safe conduct of ship-s and merchandises to our kingdom of 
England coming, and from the same kingdom to foreign parts 
passing ; forasmuch as we and our progenitors, kings of Eng- 
land, have been always heretofore masters of the aforesaid sea, 
and it would be very irksome unto us if that princely honour 
in our time should be lost or in anything diminished ; and 
although that charge of defence which concerneth all men 
ought to be supported by all, as by the laws and customs of 
the kingdom of England hath been accustomed to be done ; * 
notwithstanding, we considering that you constituted in the 
sea coasts to whom by sea as well great dangers are imminent, 
and who by the same do get more plentiful gains for the defence 
of the sea and conservation of our princely honour in that 
behalf, according to the duty of your allegiance against such 
attempts are chiefly bound to set to your helping hand, we 
command firmly" that you cause certain ships of war to be 
brought to the port of Portsmouth on March i, " and so that 
they may be there the same day at the farthest, to go from 
thence with our ships and the ships of other faithful subjects 

1 Here is the principle on which Charles acted in the following year. 
Of the other principle, that what concerned all should be consulted on by 
all, he took no account. 


for the safeguard of the sea and defence of you and yours, and 
repulse and vanquishing of whomsoever busying themselves to 
molest or trouble upon the sea our merchants and other sub- 
jects, and faithful people coming into our dominions for cause 
of merchandise or from thence returning to their own countries." 

The sum needed for fitting out the ships and for maintaining 
them and their crews for six months was to be assessed upon 
the inhabitants by the local authorities. 1 

Between these writs and the articles sent to Spain there is 
a marvellous contrast. In the writ every word speaks of corn- 
Contrast merce and peace and legitimate self-defence. The 
wThsTnVthe articles breathe a spirit of defiance and aggression, 
articles. No (j ou bt a Government is not even in these days 
expected to conduct its diplomacy in public. It is perfectly 
justified in veiling the means by which it hopes to accomplish 
its objects from the eyes of those who are interested in thwarting 
its policy ; but it is bound under the severest penalties openly 
to acknowledge the general tendency of its action, and above 
all, openly to acknowledge it to its own people, without the 
support of whom its utmost vigour will be but as the steel point 
of a lance of which the shaft has been broken away. Confidence 
inspired by the ability and rectitude of a Government is in the 
long run a reserve of power stronger than a well-disciplined 
army, stronger than a well-filled treasury. If there were many 
in England who still felt confidence in Charles, it was merely 
because as yet they had no inkling of the truth. The language 
of the ship-money writs, which led even the English Privy 
Council astray, only served to render the Spanish statesmen 
still more suspicious. Necolalde inclined to the opinion that 
Charles's intentions were after all better represented by the writs 
than by the articles. He thought that the King's real object was 
to act against both the Spaniards and the Dutch, and to bring 
the commerce of the world into the hands of his own subjects. 2 

Charles's schemes would have been far too complicated for 
practical service even if he had confined his attention to the war 

1 Writ, Oct. 20, Rush-worth, ii. 257. 

Necolalde to Philip IV., ~^, Simancas MSS. 2520. 

B B 2 


in the Low Countries. All that he did, however, was done with 
Charles does a reference, tacit or expressed, to the recovery of the 
the Paul Palatinate, and when the secret articles were sent 
nsite - to Madrid, he knew that whether the King of Spain 

were willing to forward his wishes or not, his power to do so 
was greater than it had been at any time since the landing of 

Freed from all risk of opposition from the commander of 
the Emperor's forces, the Cardinal Infant had crossed the 
June. Alps, and had joined his forces to those of the King 
n^nfent'in ^ Hungary. The united armies fell upon Ratis- 
Germany. \)on, Bernhard's prize in the preceding autumn. On 
July 1 8 the city surrendered. On August 27 a great battle was 
fought at Nordlingen. The Swedes and their allies of the 
Heilbronn League were utterly routed. Since the 
Battieof 7 day of Breitenfeld, three years before, no such victory 
* mgen. j^ been won. Its political consequences were im- 
mense. One by one the fortified towns of Southern Germany 
fell into the hands of the Imperialists. Breitenfeld had decided 
irrevocably that the Protestant lay-bishoprics of the North 
should not be distributed amongst Catholic prelates. Nord- 
lingen decided no less irrevocably that the Catholic bishoprics 
of the South should not be converted into principalities and 
duchies for the enrichment of Protestant soldiers of fortune. 
It was a victory for Spain even more than for the Emperor. It 
enabled the Cardinal Infant to carry his troops unmolested to 
the Netherlands. It did more than this. It gave to the 
Spanish statesmen a predominating influence in the council at 
Vienna. German interests would fall into the background in 
order that the paramount interest of Spain in keeping open the 
passage to the Netherlands might be consulted. 
September. On the English people, and more especially on 
e c ne'ws 1 in 0f tne English Puritans, the news of the battle could 
England. no t f a ji to leave a profound impression. 1 D'Ewes 
was roused from his learned labours to lament that ' all the 

1 It was received, Salvetti says, ' con assai generale dispiacere. ' Nnus- 

r At Sept. z6 

Letter > ' 


victories the glorious King of Sweden had acquired, and all the 
good successes his armies had gleaned up since his decease, 
were all dashed at one blow, and as it were unravelled by the 
fatal and never-enough-to-be-lamented defeat of the Protestant 
army.' In the immediate circle round the King the feeling was 

October, one of the highest satisfaction. Portland took a 
high tone with Joachimi. " No harbours," he told him, " can 
be blockaded in the British sea. The lawyers have pronounced 
that an attack upon Dunkirk would interfere with his Majesty's 
rights, and be contrary to all law both civil and international." 
He challenged the Dutch ambassador to controvert their 
reasoning. 1 

It was impossible to doubt that the results of the battle 
would compel the French to interfere in Germany more directly 
than they had hitherto done. Charles regarded the prospect 
with imperturbable self-satisfaction. Though he acknowledged 

Oct. 27. to his sister that he had no forces to send to 'oppose 
ad^c'e S to his at nce tne Imperialists and the French,' he was 
sister. ready to try once more the old game of balancing one 

against the other with as much assurance as if it had never 
been tried in vain before. This time, as Coke informed Bos- 
well, he could not fail, ' the rather because the French themselves 
do now propound to treat with him on their behalf, and then if 
they shall insist upon unfitting conditions, the King of Spain 
was as forward to draw his Majesty to their side, and this 
balance in all probability may produce good effects, though 
otherwise there appeareth little cause to be confident in either. 
Yet surely by this way either fair conditions of a general peace 
will be obtained, or at least such a party be framed which will 
be fit for his Majesty to apply himself unto, being so strong 
that there may be the more hope for good success. The best 
service ' Boswell could ' perform to his Majesty and to the 
Princess ' was ' to persuade them to rest upon his Majesty's 
counsels for treaties or for force, as he shall see just cause.' 
Windebank added a special message to Elizabeth, imparting 

1 Joachimi to the Spates-General, Oct. ^, Add. MSS. 17,677 O, fol. 


to her, in strict confidence, the information that Spain had 
promised that its triumphant army should abstain 

Oct. 28. r , L . ' 

from molesting the Palatinate, and that its ambas- 

sador should do all good offices at Vienna on behalf 

of the son of the late Elector. 1 Elizabeth, it need hardly be 

said, received these assurances with entire incredu- 

December. ,. *- , TIIO i i 1-1 

Elizabeth's hty. If, she replied, the Spaniards and the Emperor 
were so ready to restore the Palatinate now, why had 

they done nothing during the years when it had been in their 

power to restore it if they had wished to do so. 2 

Charles's messages were an object of scorn to others be- 

sides his sister. When Anstruther repeated his master's hollow 
promises to Oxenstjerna, the Swedish chancellor rode 

The French off to negotiate with the French ambassador without 
vouchsafing a word in answer. 3 He had no choice 

now but to accept Richelieu's predominance. The King of 

France took Bernhard and his shattered army into his pay. 

The Administrator unwillingly admitted French garrisons 
into the fortresses of the Palatinate. Before the end 
of the year, a French army had crossed the Rhine, 

had occupied Mannheim, and had compelled the Imperialists 

to raise the siege of Heidelberg. 

The occupation of the Palatinate by the French confirmed 

Charles in his preference for a Spanish alliance. Yet it is no 
wonder that there were honest and clear-sighted men 

opinion of in England who failed to discover the workings of 

ship-money. ^ ^^ ^ Ma j estyj wrQte RoC) hag Directed 

new writs of an old edition to the ports and maritime counties 
to maintain a proportion of shipping for the safeguard of the 
Narrow Seas according to the law and custom of England, 
which is very needful, for the French have prepared a fleet, 
and challenge a dominion in the seas where anciently they 
durst not fish for gurnets without licence." " The inquisition 

1 Coke to Boswell, Oct. 27. Windebank to Boswell, Oct. 28, S. P. 

2 Boswell to Windebank, Dec. 2, ibid. 

' Anstruther to Coke, Sept. 30, 3". P. Germany. 


into our own forests," he added, " will for the present bring 
money, and secure our timber to posterity." 

Coming from a warm opponent of the general tendencies of' 

the Government, such words may serve as an indication how 

little disposition there was as yet in England to 

How far was . _ ...... r . , , 

ship-moneya question the constitutional legality of Charles s 
demands upon the nation. In one respect indeed, 
the call upon the port towns was perilously near to the imposi- 
tion of a tax. In 1626 each town had been called upon to 
furnish such vessels as were to be found in its harbour, and the 
mode in which the burden was to be divided amongst the 
community had been left to be settled by the local authorities. 
This time the vessels were required to be of a size not to be 
found in anyjx>rt in England except in London, and when the 
King offered to find the ships out of his own navy if the towns 
would find the money, the idea of personal service, upon which 
the whole fabric of the claim had been raised, was thrust into 
the background, and all that appeared was a direct demand for 
money, to be paid over to a collector appointed by the Crown, 
and to be expended on the equipment and maintenance of the 
navy. Charles and his ministers would doubtless have argued 
that the difference was merely technical, but they had them- 
selves taken too great advantage of technicalities to have a fair 
claim to such a plea, and after all, constitutional technicalities 
are of value so far as they are the guardians of the great prin- 
ciple that a ruler can no more permanently cut himself off from 
the support of his people than a commander can permanently 
cut himself off from the opportunity of receiving supplies from 
his base of operations. 

Sooner or later, as the entire isolation of Charles's position 

and the extreme folly of the wisdom on which he prided himself 

showed themselves more clearly, the technical obiec- 

Dec. 2. 

The London tions to his proceedings would become the watch- 
petition. W0 rds of an excited nation. The only direct word of 
remonstrance as yet heard proceeded from the City of London. 
From the other towns came petitions complaining that the bur- 
den had been unfairly adjusted ; London alone asserted that 
it should not have been imposed at all. Upon the shoulders of 


the great commercial capital one-fifth of the whole weight 
rested. Out of 104,2527. London had to provide 2o,688/.' 
London alone had no need to seek ships in the Royal Navy. 
Its quota to the projected armament was to be furnished from 
Its own resources No doubt, in case of any enterprise appeal- 
ing to the national sentiment no excuses would have been 
made. Even now, the objection taken did not go to the root 
of the matter. The citizens were satisfied with asking exemp- 
tion for themselves, 'conceiving that by their ancient liberties, 
charters, and Acts of Parliament, they ought to be freed and 
discharged of those things.' 

The Lord Mayor was summoned before the Council, and 
reprimanded for his coldness in the King's service. He was 
The Lord told that the arguments of the City petition had 
fowtbB*" already been refuted by the lawyers. In vain he 
Council. offered to make excuses. He was ordered to return 
at once and to bring his fellow-citizens to a better frame of 
mind. Thoroughly intimidated, he professed his readiness to 
obey orders. The City lawyers were next sent for, and were 
warned ' to take heed how they advised the City in a case so 
clear for the King.' To an objection that the guardianship of 
the seas was already provided for by tonnage and poundage, 
Manchester answered curtly. " It is true," he said, "this writ 
hath not been used when tonnage and poundage was granted. 
Now it is not, but taken by prerogative, therefore this writ is 
now in full force." 2 Illogical as the argument was, the citizens 
Submission did not venture to dispute it. There was a stormy 
of the uty. meeting of the Common Council, which resulted in 
a resolution to submit to the King's orders. 

Though the neck of the opposition was broken for the time, 
the feelings by which it was prompted were not conciliated, 
ill-feeling " ^ n this way," wrote the Venetian ambassador, "did 
provoked. t }-,j s mos (; important affair begin and end. If it does 
not altogether violate the laws of the realm, as some think it 
does, it is certainly repugnant to usage and to the forms hither- 

1 Russell's account, April i, 1635, S. P. Dom. cclxxvi. 8. 
* Garrard to Went worth, Jan. II, Straffo'd Letters, i. 357. Rush-worth, 
li. 265. 


to observed." Charles, he further remarked, was highly pleased. 
The step which he had gained was most essential to his pro- 
jects, if he desired to free himself from the necessity of ever 
summoning a Parliament again. It was on the Lord Treasurer, 
however, and not upon Charles, that the blame was cast in the 
opinion of those who were most dissatisfied. l 

The attacks upon Portland by Laud and other Privy Coun- 
cillors had not ceased during the autumn. In October he had 
Oct. 21. been compelled to produce a list of the irregular 
irre'lfiar s receipts of his office, for the acceptance of which he 
receipts. had obtained the King's permission when he had 
been appointed to the treasurership. The sum amounted to 
44,ooo/. 2 There can, however, be little doubt that this formed 
but a very small portion of his receipts, and it was the opinion 
of those who had the best opportunities of judging, that he had 
raised a princely fortune by means which would not bear the 
Portland as light. As a financier and politician, Portland's recipe 
a financier. f Qr ever y [\\ was t o leave matters alone. With the help 
of the subsidies and the compositions for knighthood he had 
paid off the more pressing debts of the Crown ; and if we hear 
much of the grievances of the creditors whose claims were still 
unsatisfied, it must be remembered that the contentment of 
those whose claims had been extinguished has left no trace. 
Scarcely anything, however, was done by him to open new 
sources of revenue, or to place the finances on a sounder basis. 
A few thousand pounds obtained in various ways were all that 
could be placed to his credit. 3 Yet h is probable that even his 
inertness saved the Crown from unpopularity. For it is certain 
that a moderate deficit at the end of every year would be less 
dangerous to the throne than a surplus gained by the febrile 
activity with which Noy and Finch had launched the forest 
claims and ship-money upon the world. The forest claims 

1 Correr's despatch, " ec ' " 6 , 163*, Yen. MSS. 
' Jan. 5 Ji> ' 

"- Clar. S. P. i. 158. 

3 Ranke's account of Portland's finance, derived from the Venetian 
despatches, is far too flattering. It is necessary to bring general statements 
about revenue and expenditure to the test of figures, whenever it is possible 
to do so. 


were owing to the motion of Portland's rivals, and though ship- 
money was invented to carry out the foreign policy to which 
he gave his approval, there is no evidence to show that Noy 
was set to work by him. It may even be doubted how far that 
foreign policy was really his. The deliberate preparation for 
an aggressive war with the Dutch bears rather the stamp of his 
master's mind, and it may well be that he lived in the hope 
that this warlike project would come to nothing, as so many 
warlike projects of Charles's had come to nothing before. 

If such were Portland's hopes, he did not live to see how 
just his previsions were. He had long been suffering from a 
1635. painful disease, which had been gaining ground for 
Portend' 7 some months. On March 7 he was told that he was 
illness. dying. On the pth 'the King visited him, but stayed 

a very little while in his chamber ; he breathed with so much 
pain and difficulty that the King could not endure it.' Laud 
offered to ' do him the last offices, to pray with him, give him 
the sacrament, and assist him now approaching to his end.' 
The dying man sent Cottington to thank him, and to sk his 
forgiveness if he had offended him in anything. He begged 
him to ' spare the pains of coming to him. God be thanked, 
March 13. ne was at peace in his conscience.' On the i3th he 
His death. died. It was soon rumoured that he had died a 
Roman Catholic. 1 The rumour was true ; but so long had he 
delayed the acknowledgment of his belief, that though his wife 
and daughters and most of his friends were Roman Catholics, 
it was only at the last that his true sentiments were known even 
to them. When all was over, one of his physicians hurried to 
an eminent ecclesiastic of the Church to the authority of which 
he had in the end submitted. "You may pray for his soul," 
he said, " for I believe that he died a Catholic." 2 

So passed away, unregretted, this ' man of big looks and of 
a mean and abject spirit.' " After six or eight years spent in 
outward opulency, and inward murmur and trouble that it was 
not greater ; after vast sums of money and great wealth gotten, 

1 Garrard to Wentworth, March 13, 17, Strafford Letters, \. 387, 389. 
3 Panzani's despatch, March *-, Roman Transcripts, K. 0. 


and rather consumed than enjoyed, without any sense or delight 
in so great prosperity, with the agony that it was no greater, he 
died unlamented by any, bitterly mentioned by most who never 
pretended to love him, and deserved best of him ; and left a 
numerous family, which was in a short time worn out, and yet 
outlived the fortune he left behind him." 1 

The Treasury was put into commission. Laud, Cottington, 
Windebank, Manchester, and Coke were the commissioners 
March 15. named. Laud, too, was put at the head of the Com- 
suT h-Tccm- m ^tee of the Privy Council for Foreign Affairs, 
mission. Men began to look upon him as Portland's successor 
Laud re- in Charles's favour. " The Archbishop's ability and 
Portland's integrity," wrote a news-collector of the day, " both 
successor. m ake him capable of as much employment as may 
be for his honour, but to manage all can be no better than a 
glorious burthen." 2 "This," wrote Roe, "is the great man, 
made now of the Commission of the Treasury and the first of 
the Junto of Foreign Affairs, and in the greatest esteem with 
his Majesty of any in my observance ; and I will hope, whatso- 
ever the world hath sinistrously conceived, that he will prove a 
happy instrument of the public, both at home and abroad ; for 
upon less than great actions he is not set, and being now so 
great, he cannot be eminent and show it to the world by 
treading in beaten paths and the exploded steps of others. 
But he must choose and make new ways to show he knows and 
can do more than others, and this only hath made the Cardinal 
Richelieu so glorious." 3 

It was not in Laud to be a Richelieu, and even if he had 

had the ability and desire to launch England upon a new 

course of foreign policy, he would never have been 

Charles his , , ,. . , . 

own foreign permitted to do so. Charles would continue to be 
lter> as, in the main, he had been before, his own Foreign 
Minister. He would have, as before, a double policy one 
practical and appealing to the vulgar instincts, to be pursued 
openly in the eyes of the world, and representing the least 

' Clarendon, \. 54 

2 M. Nicholas to Nicholas, S. P. Dom. cclxxxv. n. 

1 Roe to Elizabeth, April 5, ibid, cclxxxvi. 34. 


upon which he was prepared to insist ; the other tentative and 
hopeful, beyond the limits of possibility, to be veiled in the 
profoundest secrecy. Of the first Laud was to be the instru- 
ment. Cottington and Windebank would be the sole confi- 
dants of the second. 

Charles therefore deliberately placed Laud in a false posi- 
tion. His negotiations with Spain were still in a critical state. 
Ian 2 * n J anuar }'> weary with Necolalde's constant objec- 
Charies tions, he had sent orders to Hopton to beg for a 
t"o conclude direct answer from the Government at Madrid. " The 
the treaty. mone y itself, were it a great deal more," wrote Winde- 
bank, " is not considerable, but, taken as a pledge of a straiter 
alliance between the two Crowns, and considering the conse- 
quences thereupon, it might have produced effects of great 
weight in Christendom ; which, if they come to nothing now, 
his Majesty nevertheless is in the same condition he was, and 
the fault and loss must be theirs. The opening of the ports, 
freeing of trade, disassieging the coast of Flanders, which the 
Hollanders glory they hold beleaguered, but, above all, the 
friendship and alliance of the King of Great Britain, and the 
countenance and protection of his royal fleet, were he to treat 
with merchants, would be worth the loan of 200,000 crowns ; 
and, as little as they seem to value it now, they would heretofore 
have bought it at another rate." ' 

Whilst Spain was apparently turning a deaf ear to Charles's 

overtures, France and the States-General were drawing closer 

Jan. 20. to one another. On January 20 a treaty was signed 

Treaty be- between them for an invasion and partition of the 


France and Spanish Netherlands, and though Charles was unable 

the States- . 

General. for a long time to come to a knowledge of its terms, 
he had every reason to suspect that they were not to his taste. 
Foreseeing Charles's annoyance, Richelieu had sent the 
Seneterre in Marquis of Scnetcrre to England as an extraordinary 
England. ambassador, to join with Pougny in urging the King 
to take part in the alliance against Spain. Richelieu, it is true, 
knew Charles too well to expect his consent, but he thought 

1 Windebank to Hopton, Jan. 24, Cta>: S. l\ i. 226 


that by asking for his alliance he might at least secure his 
neutrality. 1 

Charles, who was at the moment nettled at the Spanish 
delays, named Commissioners to treat with Seneterre and 
M rch Pougny. The Commissioners Laud, Arundel, Car- 
Hisnegotia- lisle, Holland, Windebank, and Coke were allowed 
to say that their master was inclined to listen favour- 
ably to the enemies of Spain ; especially as the Uunkirkers had 
just seized a herring-boat belonging to Pembroke, and had cap- 
tured an English vessel laden with tobacco, on the plea that that 
noxious superfluity,' as Charles called it, was to be reckoned 
amongst 'munitions of war.' 2 Before, however, the negotiation 
was fairly on foot, Boswell, though he had been unable to gain 
a sight of the treaty of partition itself, contrived to send over a 
copy of a secret article which bound the Dutch and the French 
Governments to unite in resisting any attempt to break off the 
blockade of the Flemish ports. 3 If Charles had more than, a 
momentary inclination to come to terms with France, that in- 
clination was now at an end. He ordered the 
pn ' Commissioners to spin out time without coming to a 
conclusion. 4 To the French themselves he continued to speak 
as if he wished to remain on good terms with their master, but 
some who thought they knew his mind doubted whether these 
were, indeed, his real sentiments. " Although," wrote Neco- 
lalde, " he conceals his feelings, he detests these people and the 
shamelessness with which they talk and make a display. He 
knows that they merely wish to cheat him and to prevent his 
alliance with us." 

Whether the French wished to deceive Charles or not, it is 

plain that he wished to deceive them and his own subjects as 

well. He pressed the French ambassadors to give him 

fitting assurances about the Palatinate. On April i T, 

apparently in order to give a more serious aspect to his over- 

1 Seneterre's instructions, Feb. 1S , Arch, des Ajf. Etr. xlv. 395. 

* Correr's despatch, March - 3 , Ven. MSS. Gerbier's despatches, Feb., 
March, 1635, 5. P. Flanders. 

1 Boswell to Coke, March 12, S. P. Holland. 

4 "Windebank's notes, April 3, II, 13, 18, S. P. France. 


tures, he directed that a rumour should be raised that he was 
about to levy land forces, and instructed the Council to issue 
letters requiring special attention to be paid to the musters. 1 A 
April 25. fortnight later his agent at Paris sent him a copy of 
obtains^ l ^ e P art to n Treaty between France and the States. 2 
copy of the jje now learned that by this treaty Dunkirk. Ostend, 

Partition ' ~ 

Treaty. and Bruges were assigned to Louis. At the same time 
he learned that a French fleet was preparing to enter the 
Channel, doubtless with the intention of joining the Dutch in 
besieging Dunkirk. 

There was a strong feeling in England that it would be 
unsafe to allow Dunkirk to pass into French hands ; and a 
call upon the people, made loyally and openly, could hardly 
have failed to bring to the surface whatever patriotic impulse 
was in them. Charles, however, had not that definite grasp 
upon his own policy which would have enabled him to speak 
loyally or decisively. He preferred to keep as many questions 
open as possible, and to avoid committing himself to any special 
Aprils/, line of policy. Unusual attention was to be paid 
be I a?- sters to the musters. All untrained men between the ages 
tended to. o f sixteen and sixty were to be enrolled. The beacons 
along the coast were to be looked to. The reason given for all this 
preparation to resist invasion was that it was necessary to secure 
the realm in the face of the great armaments on the Continent. 3 

The musters were therefore to serve to deceive Charles's 
subjects into thinking that England was in danger of inva- 
Charies's s ' on - He knew perfectly well that there was as little 
object. chance of a French invasion of England as there 
was of an English invasion of the Palatinate. In truth he was 
anxiously waiting for a final answer from Madrid. Already in 
., , the Spanish Council of State Olivares had declared 


oiivares's that he saw no reason to change his opinion of the 

Ion ' uselessness of the proposed treaty. Yet though 

there was little chance of seeing Charles engaged in an actual 

1 Windebank's notes, April II, S. P. France. 
y The copy in .T. P. France is indorsed as received at this date. 
' The Council to the Lords Lieutenants, April 27, S. P. Dom. 
cclxxxvii. 55. 


war with the Dutch, so small a sum as 50,000/1 might be worth 
risking to gain his goodwill. Necolalde was especially charged 
to urge Charles to sign the proposed treaty for the partition of 
the Netherlands. 1 

Before the end of April, Necolalde informed Cottington of 

the favourable despatch which he had received. On May i 

May i. the articles of the treaty for the employment of the 

The treaty fl eet were p u t m t o a fi na i shape, and according to 

with Spam 

agreed to. orders from Madrid a courier was despatched to 
Brussels for the money which was to be paid by Spain towards 
its expenses. Charles, however, had, as Olivares suspected, 
not shown himself very eager about the further treaty binding 
him to attack the Dutch, and had asked that, at all events, its 
terms might not be committed to writing. 2 

All this while the greatest anxiety had been expressed in 
England to know what was the King's intention in setting forth 
a fleet. The Queen, who had again been won to 
bed^neJith the side of France by the civil speeches of Pougny 
the fleet? and g eneterrej had used all her wiles to lure the 
secret from her husband. Charles only broke his usual silence 
to assure both her and all other inquirers that he merely meant 
to protect his coasts and the freedom of his subjects' traffic. 3 In 
this spirit were couched the instructions issued to the Admiral 
of the fleet, the Earl of Lindsey, the day after the agreement 
with Spain had been completed. Lindsey was further 
lustrations informed that he must exact from all passing ships 
to Lmdsey. an ac k now i ec ig men t o f his Majesty's sovereignty, and 
that this sovereignty extended to the opposite coasts. 4 

To rouse all the landsmen in England to resist an imaginary 
invasion, and to send out a magnificent fleet to compel a few 

' Consulta of the Council of State, March *- s . Philip IV. to Necolalde, 

Marches simancas MSS. 2520. 

" Necolalde to the Cardinal Infant, ^j" 2 \ May ~, Brussels AfSS. 

1 Necolalde to the Cardinal Infant, April , ibid, 

4 Lords of the Admiralty to Lindsey, May 2. Lindsey to the King, 

with Coke's marginal reply, May 14 (?), S, P. Dem. clvii. fol. 135 b., 
cclxxxviii. 85. 


passing vessels to dip their flags and lower their mainsails was 
hardly a result worthy of the effort that had been made. Charles 
himself probably did not know his own intentions. The dupli- 
city with which he was treating all around him had its root in 
the incoherence of his own ideas. He made different professions 
to different men, but in each case the profession answered to 
some fleeting purpose in his own mind. 

Whilst Charles was scheming, Richelieu and Frederick 
Henry were acting. On May 9 a French herald rode into 
Brussels and formally declared war against Spain. 
Kranc<fd 9 e- The French army had already crossed the frontier 
agJi e n S s r ar and had defeated a Spanish force. On the 2oth a 
Spam. junction was effected with the Prince of Orange. 
Under stress of war, the Cardinal Infant wrote to inform Ne- 
May23 colalde that it was out of his power to send the 
befm n d e for expected contribution to the English fleet. 1 Neco- 
Charies. lalde accordingly adopted Charles's favourite device 
of spinning out the time, as he knew that it was unlikely- that 
even such a sum as 5o,ooo/. could be provided at Madrid for 
many months. 

Whatever Charles did, therefore, he would have to do alone. 

On May 27 Lindsey took the command of his fleet in the 

M f Downs. He remained there long enough to convoy 

Lindsey to Dunkirk twelve vessels laden with men and muni- 
takes com- %_ i 11- 

maud of the tions ofwar. The Dunkirkers showed their gratitude 
by chasing a Dutch ship into Dover roads, where, but 
for the active intervention of the crew of an English merchant- 
man, they would have captured her under the very guns of the 
town and castle. 2 On June 6 Lindsey weighed anchor, and 
June 6. sailed down Channel to compel the combined French 
He sails an( j ) u t c h fleets, which were expected to reinforce 


channel. t h e blockading squadron before Dunkirk, to salute 
the English flag. 

The Cardinal Infant to Necolalde, j^^, Brussels MSS. 

* Correr's despatch, June ^, Van. MSS. Lindsey to the Lords of the 
Admiralty, May 30, June 6. Conway to Coke, June 5, S. P. Dom. 
cclxxxix. 75, ccxc. 25, 34. 


Four days after Lindsey sailed from the Downs a rumour 
spread over London that a sea-fight had taken place in the 

june I0 . Channel. A violent cannonade, it was said, had been 
JfTiiT* 1 near d on the English coast. Charles, who had done 
fight. his utmost to bring about a collision, looked anxious 

and moody. At last it turned out that the fleet had fired the 
guns in salute of a Danish squadron going peaceably on its way. 1 
If the false rumour of a conflict was not speedily succeeded 
by a true one, it was owing to Richelieu, not to Charles. The 

June 15. French minister would never permit the lilies of 
a^vertfa con- France to be lowered before the banner of St George, 
riict - but neither was he ready to provoke a neighbouring 

nation to war, to gratify a punctilio. On the i3th the combined 
fleet of France and the States was lying in Portland Roads. 
On the 1 5th, whilst Lindsey was still at St. Helen's, Richelieu 
sent instant instructions to the French Admiral to retire with 
three of his smallest vessels to Belle Isle, putting the other ships 
of his squadron under the orders of the Dutch Admiral, and 
giving dhections that they should carry no flags at all. The 
Dutch had never made any scruple about saluting the English 
flag, and the French ships, without their Admiral, might count 
as Dutch for the occasion. The next day Richelieu heard that 
the Spanish transports had already been convoyed into Dunkirk 
by Lindsey, and at once ordered both the Dutch and the French 
ships to the coast of Spain. There was no longer any need ot 
their presence in the Channel, and it was better that even the 
slightest risk of an unnecessary collision should be avoided. 2 

June 25. Lindsey's operations were thus reduced to a mere 
finds' display of naval force. Charles and his ministers, 
enemy. eager for more than this, urged on the commander 
the necessity of doing something for the King. "You must 
command the seas," wrote Coke, " or be commanded. Wisdom 
seeks not danger when with honour it may be shunned, but 
where honour and dominion lie at stake, brave men will set up 

1 Correr's despatches, June 2^-1?, J/^t. MSS. 
* Richelieu to De Manty, June ~ 1 -^ Lettres de Ruhtliett, v. 66. 


their rests." 1 Lindsey did not need such encouragement to 
execute his orders ; but he could do no more than ply up and 
down between Plymouth and the Lizard in the hope that the 
French Admiral would again appear in the Channel. Even 
Charles did not claim a salute in the Bay of Biscay, and as 
England was not at war with France, it was useless to pursue 
the French ships to waters undeniably their own. 

Richelieu was naturally anxious that no risk of a conflict 
should occur in the future. He instructed Seneterre to propose 
juneie. a compromise. Let the flag of each nation receive 
proposes" a salute when within sight of the shore to which it 
compromise, belonged. In mid channel the smaller fleet might 
pay respect to the larger, whatever its nationality was. If 
Charles was not satisfied with this pioposal, any reasonable 
expedient would be accepted in its place. 2 

Charles would not hear of a compromise. He replied that 
Philip II. had saluted the English flag when he came to marry 
Queen Mary. Elizabeth had told Henry IV. plainly 
Chafes 2 ' that if he pretended to authority on her sea she would 
sink his ships. Charles had yet to learn that stub- 
born facts would not give way before the most ample store of 
precedents. Seneterre answered reasonably that Louis was not 
bound to repeat the concessions which his father had made to 
a useful ally at a moment when he was struggling for existence. 
Richelieu, however, was unwilling to push the controversy to 
extremities, and directed the ambassadors to say as little about 
the dispute as possible. 3 

Richelieu, in truth, had more serious matters to consider. 
The attack upon the Spanish Netherlands, from which so much 
had been expected, had ended in failure. On May 29 the 

J Coke to Conway, June 25, 6". P. Dom. ccxci. 59. 

2 Louis XIII. to Seneterre and Pougny, June ~, Bill, Nat. Fr. 
15,933. Compare S. P. Dom. ccxci. 80. 

8 Coke to De Vic and Augier, July 2, S. P. Dom. ccxciii. 12 ; Sene- 
terre to Bouthillier, July - & . Bouthillier to Seneterre, July , Bill. 
Nai. Fr. 15, 993. 


allies stormed TirlemonL The French troops sacked the 

Ma town, and committed the most horrible outrages upon 

The French the inhabitants. The cry of the victims resounded 

Nether- from one end of the country to the other. The 

grievances which had led to such bitter complaints of 

the Spanish Government were forgotten in a moment. Burgher 

and nobleman joined to protest that they would be neither 

Frenchmen nor Dutchmen. The townsman left his shop to 

keep guard upon the wall, gentlemen hurried into Brussels to 

place their swords at the disposal of the Cardinal Infant. The 

T invaders strove in vain to stem the torrent of the 


Failure of national uprising. They laid siege to Louvain on 

the French , , 

attack ujx>n June 15, only to abandon the attempt on the 24th. 
Aether*"' A body of Imperialist troops from Germany threat- 
lands ' ened to take them in the rear. The French regiments 

especially were in evil case. Their commissariat was deficient, 
and their discipline lax. They melted away under hunger and 
sickness as Mansfeld's troops had melted away ten years before. 
But for the timely offer of bread from the Dutch stores, they 
would have been starved outright. As it was, they deserted 
their standards by two or three hundred at a time. 1 It was 
therefore necessary to beat a hasty retreat. On July 26 the 
July 26. Dutch, long unused to failure, learned that a party 
Schema's fr m Gueldres had seized on Schenck's Sconce, the 
Sconce. fortification which commands the two great arms of 
the Rhine at their point of separation. 

One object of Charles's wishes had thus been obtained 
without his co-operation. Dunkirk was not likely to fall into 
French hands for some time to come. If he had 
without never put a single armed vessel to sea, never levied a 
aUies ' single penny of ship-money, the result would have 

been precisely the same as it was. His own position was seri- 
ously affected by his miscalculation. His irritating, hesitating 
aims, his arrogant pretensions, his contemptuous ignorance of 
the requirements of other states, had left him without a friend 
in Europe. France and the States- General had no reason to 

Boswell to Coke, July 2, S. P: llollemJ. 


thank him. The offer of the Spanish alliance had not been 
renewed, nor did it seem probable that it ever would be renewed. 
In the midst of the stirring events of the early summer Charles's 
hopes of regaining the Palatinate by negotiation had received 

an unexpected shock. On May 20 the Emperor and 
TbepLcecf the Elector of Saxony signed the Peace of Prague. 

Ferdinand at last consented to abandon the Edict 
of Restitution, though such ecclesiastical lands as had been 
recovered by the Roman Catholic Church before 1627 were 
still to be retained by it. The remaining stipulations were a 
sad blow to Charles's wishes. Whatever terms were made were 
made for the Lutherans alone. Calvinism was not acknowledged 
as a recognised religion. The Palatinate was not to be restored. 
If the children of the late proscribed Elector made their sub- 
mission in humble form some sustenance might be granted 
them out of charity, but they were to claim nothing as of right. 
The Emperor, the closest ally of that Spain for the sake of 
which the King of England believed himself to have done so 
much, had definitely pronounced against the wish which, next to 
the maintenance of his own authority, was nearest to Charles's 

If Charles had done nothing to attach the Spanish Govern. 
ment to himself, he had done much to exasperate the Dutch. 

He spoke openly of his purpose to vindicate the right 
Thefltin of his subjects to trade freely with Dunkirk. 1 His 
ine1 ' fleet was doing no good in the west There was no 
enemy to fight, and the victualling officers had proved as roguish 
or incompetent as they had proved in the days of Buckingham. 
The sailors complained that whenever a cask of salt beef was 
moved, the smell which issued from it was bad enough to breed a 
plague. 2 Sickness broke out amongst the crews and carried off 
600 men. 

1 Joachimi to the States-General, ^ Add. MSS. 17,677 O, fol. 


* Lindsey to the Lords of the Admiralty, July 21, S. P Dom. ccxciv, 

20. Correr's despatch, , Ven. MSS. 


In August, when Lindsey returned to the Downs to revictual, 1 
he found that his master's sovereignty of the seas was being 
questioned in another way than by a mere refusal to dip the 
English sail. English vessels had been pillaged in the very 
^sseiT 1 Straits of Dover. Even the post-boat, which had 
pillaged. hitherto passed unquestioned between Dover and 
Dunkirk, had been rifled by a vessel from Calais. 2 The Dutch 
were still more exasperated than the French. The Dunkirk 
privateers had broken the blockade, and had dashed at their 
The Dun- fishing-boats in the North Sea. A hundred large 
t'eers^ebe" herring busses, as they were called, were destroyed or 
fishi?g- tch captured. English sailors passing along the coasts of 
boats. Northumberland and Durham saw the sky red with 

the flames of burning vessels. The Dutch ships of war hurried 
to protect or avenge their countrymen. The privateers fled 
for refuge into English waters. It was hard for the Dutch 
captains, in their mood of exasperation, to see their prey es- 
caping. One of them followed a Dunkirker with his prizes 

July 13. m to the port of Scarborough. The quarrel was fought 
s!fr- ts at out c l ose to the shore. Shot and bullets flew about, 
borough. anc j some of the townsmen were wounded. The 
Dutchmen gained the upper hand, and sailed away triumphantly 
with the vessels which they had captured. A fortnight later 
another Dutch ship which had chased a privateer 

J"iy 26. j ntQ t j ie same p Ort) sent s j xtv or e ighty men on shore, 

vowing that they would have the ship or lose their lives. 3 

Lindsey was ordered to detach three ships to the north to 
Aug. 15. repress these outrages. 4 Before they reached their 
kind at utch destination a fresh violation of neutrality was reported 
Biythe. f rom Blythe. To make sure of capturing a Dunkirk 
privateer, a Dutch captain had landed his men, had pursued his 
enemies two miles inland, and had robbed them before he let 

* Pennington to Nicholas, Aug. 3. Windebank to Coke, Aug. 6, S. P, 
Doin. ccxcv. 1 8, 37- 

2 Examinations of Perkins and Redwood, July 8, ibid, ccxciii. 70, 71. 

s Atmarr to Osborne, July 14 (?). Bailiffs of Scarborough to Osborne, 
fuly 26, ibid, ccxciii. 107, i. ccxiv. 46, i. 

4 The Council to Lindsey, July 29, ibid, ccxciv. 55. 


them go. Lindsey's ships did not succeed in meeting with the 

offender, but they seized another Dutch man-of-war which ran 

under their guns in hot pursuit of an enemy, and sent it as a prize 

to Hull on the mere chance that it might prove to be one of 

those which had done the mischief at Scarborough or Blythe. 1 

Lindsey himself remained for some time in the 

Lindsey's Downs despatching vessels from time to time to con- 

empioyment. voy English merchants to Dunkirk or Ostend. 2 Before 

the end of> September he weighed anchor once more and steered 

down Channel. He did not get beyond the Isle of 

Wight. The autumn storms checked his course, and 

his provisions were again running short On October 8 he 

struck his flag. The great fleet upon which the eyes 

of Europe had been fixed had succeeded in capturing 

one Dutch vessel, had convoyed a few English traders and some 

Spanish transports to the Flemish ports, and had compelled a 

large number of merchantmen of various nations to lower their 

sails in token of respect. Beyond this it had accomplished 

nothing. 8 

It is undeniable that the knot of foreign policy which lay 

before Charles in the autumn was not easy to untie. To give 

active support to Spain was to prop up a decaying 

Difficulties -IT v c 

oftheskua- and unintelligent rule against the living powers of 
the world. To give active support to Richelieu and 
the States-General was to impose a foreign yoke upon a people 
by whom it was detested. Neutrality, too, had its own risks. 
Dunkirk in the hands of France would be truly formidable to 
England, whilst its maintenance in the hands of Spain by direct 
or indirect aid from England implied the maintenance of a 
nest of privateers which sent forth havoc and destruction upon 

1 Information of Cramlington and others, Aug. 16, S. P. Dem. ccxcv. 
71 ; Joachimi to the King, Aug. 25. Answer to Joachimi, Aug. 27, S. P. 

Holland. Joachimi to the States-General, gepT **' 10' Add ' MSS ' ! 7> 6 77 
O, fol. 378, 382. 

2 Lindsey to Windebank, Aug. 27; Pennington to Nicholas, Aug. 31, 
.S. P. Dom. ccxcvi, 30, 55. 

' Lindsey to Coke, Sept. 25. Lindsey's relation, Oct. 6, ibid, ccxcviii. 
45, ccxcix. 28. 


the fishermen and traffickers of Holland and Zealand. It may 
be that the best solution of the difficulty was to be found in a 
prudent adaptation of Roe's policy to the circumstances of the 
case, and that a firm intimation that while England would 
resist to the utmost any attempt to establish a French garrison 
in Dunkirk, she would not oppose an increase of the Dutch 
territory in that direction, would have been the wisest course 
to have adopted. However that may have been, no word of 
condemnation is too strong for the manner in which Charles 
treated the whole subject of his relations with the Continent 
It had all the weakness of a purely selfish policy, without any 
of the apparent and momentary strength which a selfish policy 
receives from vigour of conception and boldness of action. 

One man alone in Charles's service was capable of applying 
to the problem the qualities which for a time at least might 
have given weight to the defence of English interests on the 
Continent. But Wentworth was hard at work in Dublin, and 
even if Charles had wished it, he could never have found 
another servant fit to replace him there. 







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